Hip Dysplasia


Hip Dysplasia



Dysplasia of the hip if adolescent patients successfully treated for developmental dysplasia of the hip

ModaressiM. Erschbamer,and G. U. Exner

The successful treatment of DDH in infancy does not ensure normal hip development; therefore, follow up into maturity may be recommended.


Developmental dysplasia of the hip:  What has changed in the last 20 years?

Pavel KotlarskyReuben HaberVictor Bialik, and Mark Eidelman


Hip dysplasia occurs when the hip joint doesn’t develop normally. It is commonly diagnosed during infancy or early childhood and at this early age is referred to as ‘Developmental Dysplasia of the Hip’ (DDH). DDH can go unnoticed during the early years and may not cause any symptoms. It may not be until the child grows and becomes more active in the early teen years that symptoms arise and adolescent hip dysplasia is diagnosed.  This is often a result of a growth spurt and the need for the hip to support more weight as the child gets bigger.

In a young person with hip dysplasia, the hip socket (acetabulum) is too shallow to effectively support and cover the ball of the hip, or head of the femur (thighbone).

Some of the signs and symptoms of hip dysplasia in teenagers are:

  • Pain in the hip or groin area
  • Deceased ability to participate in physical activities due to hip pain or fatigue
  • A ‘clicking’ sound or popping sensation when moving the hip
  • Difficulty walking
  • Limping or a change in how they walk
  • Decreased stamina

These symptoms can vary from mild to severe and usually become worse over time.

Hip dysplasia can lead to the early development of osteoarthritis, a condition in which the cartilage in a joint wears away and bone rubs on bone. The treatment for adolescence hip dysplasia will aim to delay or avoid the onset of osteoarthritis while protecting the hip joint for as long as possible.

Treatments may include:

  • Medication to manage pain
  • Modified lifestyle, including avoiding activities that cause discomfort, weight loss if needed
  • Physiotherapy and rehabilitation
  • Surgery (this will depend on age, severity of the condition, extent of damage, whether osteoarthritis is occurring, and the number of growing years left)


If your teen is reporting pain in their hip or groin area, it’s important to speak to your doctor who may complete an assessment of your teen’s hips or may refer to other health professionals for assessment and/or treatment. Although physiotherapy and medication may temporarily relieve pain, the long term solution is to realign the hip joint to relieve the pressure. Treating hip dysplasia and protecting the hip joint in the early stages is important as it can postpone the need for surgery until much later in life.

You may find connecting with other families and teens with similar experiences beneficial.

Useful links:



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Disclaimer: This publication by Miracle Babies Foundation is intended solely for general education and assistance and it is it is not medical advice or a healthcare recommendation. It should not be used for the purpose of medical diagnosis or treatment for any individual condition. This publication has been developed by our Parent Advisory Team (all who are parents of premature and sick babies) and has been reviewed and approved by a Clinical Advisory Team. This publication is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Miracle Babies Foundation recommends that professional medical advice and services be sought out from a qualified healthcare provider familiar with your personal circumstances.To the extent permitted by law, Miracle Babies Foundation excludes and disclaims any liability of any kind (directly or indirectly arising) to any reader of this publication who acts or does not act in reliance wholly or partly on the content of this general publication. If you would like to provide any feedback on the information please email [email protected].