Developmental Dysplasia of the Hips


Reviewed by Malcolm Battin, Sue Stott & Charmaine Lo
Clinical Guidelines Back Newborn Services Home Page

These guidelines are based on the following information and known resource contraints.

Approximately 1 in 100 babies will have hip instability immediately after birth. However, for the majority of babies this hip instability will resolve in the first few weeks of life, leaving an incidence of DDH of 1-2 per 1000. Detection of DDH is not always easy and all screening programmes have an incidence of late presentations of DDH. Screening is thought to reduce the incidence of “late” DDH by about 50%.

All babies should be examined in the neonatal unit for hip instability and action taken as below.

Babies with definite DDH i.e. a dislocated hip that is either reducible or irreducible:

Babies with “soft signs” of DDH i.e. clicky hips or asymmetric skin creases:

Babies with risk factors for DDH but no clinical signs of instability:

Risk factors are defined as below:

Action required:

Link to GP letter