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Acta Paediatr. 1996 Feb;85(2):225-9.

Ultrasonographic evaluation of breech presentation as a risk factor for hip dysplasia.

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Department of Orthopaedics, Trondheim University Hospital, Norway.


In order to gain more information of breech position as a risk factor for congenital hip dysplasia or dislocation, the hips of 408 newborns delivered in the breech position were examined by ultrasound. Clinical examination was performed by both experienced paediatricians and orthopaedic surgeons. The infants were re-examined by ultrasound at 2-3 months of age. Twenty-five newborns (6.1%) had neonatal hip instability. Breech presentation as a risk factor was confirmed, with first borns, breech position with extended knees, and high birthweight as special high-risk groups. Ultrasound showed subluxation in most of the unstable hips. The main benefit of using ultrasound was that direct visualization permitted more reliable evaluation, especially when the clinical findings were uncertain. Normal ultrasound findings in false positive and uncertain Ortolani tests reduced the frequency of unnecessary treatment. Because ultrasound was used in follow-up, the need of radiography was reduced. There were no late-detected cases of hip dysplasia or dislocation, indicating that routine follow-up is not necessary in breech infants with normal hips at birth, provided that the neonatal screening is optimal.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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