Joanne Gallacher
By Joanne Gallacher

Clicky hips

Clicky hips and how they're treated

clicky hipsA clicky hip or clicky hips usually means that your practitioner who examined your baby's hips can move the thighbone (femur) more than is usual in the hip joint socket in the pelvis.

In very few babies the hip joint will be too loose, and the femur may move out of its proper position meaning it 'sub-luxes' or dislocates.

This prevents the joint developing normally and can interfere with normal development of walking.

Babies are checked soon after birth, and again at about 6-8 weeks, and about 8/9 months. Dislocation, or potential dislocation, of the hip is a difficult condition to diagnose, which is why it is checked for at repeated intervals. In the majority of affected cases there is a predisposing condition, e.g. breech birth, a family history or Caesarean birth. Plus, it's also very common with firstborn girls.

Children affected by clicky hips often limp when they begin to walk, the condition can be confirmed by ultrasound image. In most cases treatment offered is a 'spika' a device that keeps the hips in a controlled position.

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