Adjusting to diagnosis and treatment of developmental dysplasia of the hip

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Learn how to cope when your child has been diagnosed with and treated for developmental dysplasia of the hip and find resources and supports to help you and your family.

Key points

  • There are many feelings you may be experiencing at the start of treatment for developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH). Your feelings are important and you should discuss them with your child’s health-care team.
  • There are many resources to help you learn more and cope with your child’s treatment including websites, books and parent support groups.

Coping and feelings

Starting treatment for developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH) often comes at a time when there is already a lot of change happening in your life. You may feel overwhelmed with the start of treatment, the small changes that you must make day to day and the time and financial requirements that are involved in the appointments. No matter what you are feeling at this time, your feelings are important as a parent/caregiver and we encourage you to discuss these feelings at your appointments. There are many resources for parents with children with DDH, which can be found below.

Social situations, childcare and school concerns

Many people may ask about the treatment that your child requires, whether it is a harness, a brace, a cast or surgery. To make this easier on you, you may want to have a simple answer that you can use to explain to others, simply stating that your child has DDH which means that the hips are not stable, and the treatment method is helping to correct this.

Children who are being treated for DDH may still go to childcare. It is important to inform their caretaker of any changes to their routine and what they are able and not able to do.

Children who are treated for DDH before school age often do not require any special requirements by the time they reach school age, such as crutches or casts. If your child is treated for DDH while they are in school, your child may require some time away from school for their surgery. Your health-care team will provide you with the necessary documentation for your child for any time away from school or any special accommodations at school that they may require.

Last updated: October 17th 2022