Hip Dysplasia – Is It Time to See a Hip Specialist?

Sports ortho doctor


What Is Hip Dysplasia?

Hip dysplasia is a condition where the roof of the socket does not fully cover the ball of the joint. Without stability from the ball and socket, the hip joint is more susceptible to injuries including labral tearing, progressive arthritis, or even dislocation.


Elite Sports Medicine + Orthopedics hip specialist, Dr. Brian Dierckman, MD describes hip dysplasia and one powerful treatment method he uses called a periacetabular osteotomy (PAO).



Hip dysplasia is often found by doctors shortly after birth. According to the International Hip Dysplasia Institute, 1 in 10 infants are born with hip dysplasia.

While this condition is commonly discovered after birth, hip dysplasia may also be found in teenagers and young adults as well. It is also possible to live with hip dysplasia into later adult years without knowing it until you begin suffering pain. If you begin suffering hip pain, your doctor may recommend imaging such as an x-ray or MRI .


Causes of Hip Dysplasia

While it is not confirmed why hip dysplasia happens, it is speculated that it occurs in utero because that is when the hip socket is most shallow. The socket gradually deepens over time, allowing for more stability.

The also specifies that genetics increases the likelihood of developing hip dysplasia.


Who is Most at Risk of Developing Hip Dysplasia? 

Anyone can get hip dysplasia, but the following may increase the risk of developing the condition:


Can Hip Dysplasia Cause Knee Pain?

Hip dysplasia can actually cause knee pain in addition to hip pain. When someone is experiencing hip pain, they may walk different or overcompensate by putting weight on one leg more than the other. This can lead to pain in the knees and legs. 


Hip Dysplasia Treatment

Many infantile cases of hip dysplasia resolve themselves naturally over time. A brace may be recommended to aid natural recovery.

However, if hip dysplasia is discovered later in life, the condition may require surgery. In the video earlier in this article, Dr. Brian Dierckman, MD touches on one surgical procedure used to correct hip dysplasia called a periacetabular osteotomy (PAO).

In a PAO, an orthopedic hip specialist creates an incision in the front of the pelvis. The surgeon then cuts the pelvis and shifts it around to cover the roof (the socket) over the ball. This provides stability in the joint and reduces the risk of progressive damage.

More extreme cases of hip dysplasia may require hip replacement surgery.


Book an Appointment with a Hip Doctor Near You

If you believe you may suffer from hip dysplasia, you should visit a hip dysplasia specialist near you. The orthopedic surgeons at Elite Sports Medicine + Orthopedics treat a wide range of injuries and conditions including hip dysplasia in Nashville, Franklin, and Brentwood, TN. 



“What Is Hip Dysplasia? - International Hip Dysplasia Institute.” International Hip Dysplasia Institute, 5 Feb. 2021, hipdysplasia.org/developmental-dysplasia-of-the-hip/.

Nick Flory Nick is the Marketing Manager for Elite Sports Medicine + Orthopedics. He has been writing and reviewing medical content since 2018. https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicholasflory/

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