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Arch Orthop Trauma Surg. 1988;107(3):129-35.

Pitfalls of early diagnosis and treatment of congenital dislocation of the hip joint.

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Department of Orthopedic Surgery II, University of Göteborg, East Hospital, Sweden.


The efficiency of the routines for early diagnosis and treatment of congenital dislocation of the hip joint (CDH) practiced in the 1960s in the city of Göteborg were reviewed. Between 1961 and 1970 there were 65,875 live births in Göteborg. Eighty-five percent of the estimated number of cases of CDH were diagnosed during the first month of life. Of the children "missed" at the primary screening on the maternity wards, 75% (15/20) were premature babies and/or had been delivered during weekends. In all, 475 newborn children were judged to have unstable hips (dislocated or dislocatable hips), corresponding to an incidence of 7.2 per thousand live births. In 19 children, abduction treatment with braces commenced during the first 10 days of life failed to prevent dislocation. Eighteen of these children were treated primarily with a Frejka pillow and one with a von Rosen splint. A history of CDH among relatives was obtained in 47% of these 19 children including four of five children who had developed pathological hips after supplementary treatment with a hip spica cast and/or surgery. Radiological examination at the age of 1-4 months was helpful in revealing failure of early abduction treatment to prevent dislocation, which in most cases was difficult to detect by clinical examination at this early age.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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