Baby Pregnancy

Newborn Hip Scan

When Darcey was born earlier this month like all babies she had her first full physical at 72 hours old. As she wasn’t very well at the time we were admitted to hospital and she was checked over by 3 senior doctors who were all fantastic and picked up on two issues. One of these was ‘clicky’ or ‘clunky’ hips.

I hadn’t heard of this before and she is baby number 3 for me. With the boys the first newborn check seemed like a formality and the doctors ticked the boxes in the red book and off we went. Poor Darcey wasn’t feeling well at the time anyway and they all had to manipulate her hips, she was not happy about this in the slightest. The good thing was that her hips weren’t dislocating so there was no major problems but the doctors said they would send her for a hip scan as a matter of course.

I wasn’t too worried about this as I’ve heard it is very common in newborns and the scans are just done as a precaution. I was expecting us to get an appointment for when she was 6 weeks old however the letter arrived from the hospital asking us to go this week. She was only 18 days old and it was slightly ironic the scan was booked the day before her actual due date, when she shouldn’t really even be here.

The other thing was they booked the scan for 8:50am at the hospital about 7 miles from our house. Firstly getting there was a nightmare, I tried my best to be on time but just before we left she needed feeding and I couldn’t ignore that. Then being that time on a Tuesday morning it was school and rush hour traffic. I had to call the hospital on my way there and apologise as there was no way I was going to be there a 8:50. In the end I was about 30 minutes late to the appointment but the hospital staff were fantastic and very understanding and still did her scan. Getting anywhere on time with a 2 week old baby is impossible at the moment!

I was expecting the technicians to get her into all funny positions for the ultrasound, manipulating the hip joints and for there to be lots of crying. This is not the case at all;

  • Firstly her all in one was undone and pulled up to her nappy
  • Then she was laid on her left side with my hands gently holding her shoulders so she felt safe and secure.
  • The technician undid the right side of her nappy so they could scan her hip as she lay in that position.
  • Then we did the same on the other side.

It really was as simple as that and took approximately 5 minutes in total. She didn’t even make a fuss when they were doing it. There was I thinking that they’d be pulling and manipulating her hip joints to scan her, I wish I’d know how simple it was beforehand!

I was going to ask to take a photo when they were doing it to show others how simple the scan is and that it’s nothing to worry about. But I thought they might think I was slightly crazy and I was already so late for the appointment.

I asked the technician what they look for on the scan and he showed me they want to see an angle of greater than 60 degrees along the hip joint. For Darcey the right hip was 64 but the left was borderline at 60. This means we need to go back and have another scan in 4 weeks time. I’m not worried about this though as she was scanned very early, most hospitals wait until baby is 6 weeks old to do this.

I did also ask if there was anything we should be doing to help her hips, thinking that they would say keep them together, I was completely wrong again and they advised the opposite;

    • Move her legs into the frog legged position, when I feed her or am cuddling her.
    • If using a baby carrier try and put her legs in the frog legged position if it allows and is safe.
    • When we change her nappy don’t use her feet to raise her bottom but put our hand under her back. Also hold her legs in the frog legged position for about 10 seconds.
    • Change the way we swaddle her so her hips and legs aren’t bound together. There is a video of how to do this here.

There is a lot more information online at If you have any worries or concerns then take a look at the website as it’s full of tips and information.

UPDATE 16/02/16

Today we went back to the hospital for the second hip scan and Darcey is now 6 weeks old, which is when I thought she was meant to be having the scan anyway. I’m pleased to say that everything is looking fine, the scan was quick and easy, she didn’t even make a sound.

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  • Reply acornishmum

    I really hope her next scan goes well! Aw I’m a little jealous of all those newborn cuddles you’re having 😉

    Thanks for linking up to #PicknMix

    Stevie x

    January 28, 2016 at 8:49 pm
  • Reply Megan Bidmead (@whispertoroar)

    This was really informative! We have a history of clicky hips in the family so had to get our daughters’ hips scanned at four weeks. (Or at least I think it was four weeks. It’s all a blur of sleepless nights in my mind). They were really lovely and gentle and it all turned out to be fine. Thank you for the information, I know it would have reassured me to read this post back then! #twinklytuesday

    January 26, 2016 at 7:45 pm
    • Reply Lisa

      Thanks Megan, I’m pleased they’re seeing her so quickly.

      January 30, 2016 at 5:06 pm
  • Reply Emma @sophieellaandme

    Very informative post, I hadn’t heard of this before! I’m sure this post will be useful for other parents. I’m glad they picked up on it early and I hope everything is ok at the next scan (I’m sure it will be!) xx

    January 26, 2016 at 2:45 pm
  • Reply Unhinged Mummy (aka Janine Woods)

    I was drawn to your post by your title on the #twinklytuesay linky because my daughter had hip dysplasia (click hips) but hers wasn’t detected until her six week check and then she wasn’t scanned until 10 weeks old. She had bilateral hip dysplasia which meant that both of her hips were affected and she was put into a pavlik harness. She was in it for about twenty weeks in total but her hips are fine now although she will have xrays at southampton hospital until she is five. I have written a little about my daughters hip dysplasia on my blog under the tag ‘hip dysplasia’ if you want to have a little read. Hopefully you’re little ones hips would have corrected themselves by the time you go back for her next appointment though but if not it sounds like she is on good hands 🙂

    January 26, 2016 at 10:21 am
  • Reply Kaye

    I’m glad it was such a simple scan, as being a newborn is pretty stressful in itself isn’t it! Hope she’s feeling better now and at least they’re keeping an eye on her. #twinklytuesday

    January 26, 2016 at 8:14 am
    • Reply Lisa

      I know even though she’s baby no 3 I’m struggling to remember what I’m meant to be doing after a 7 year age gap x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:33 am
  • Reply Coombe Mill

    Sounds like some great exercises there to do once you have the know how of what you are doing. #TwinklyTuesday

    January 26, 2016 at 8:06 am
  • Reply Mum in Brum

    This is a really informative post and very useful for any parents who have been called back for the scan. I’m not sure how you managed to make the appointment at all at that time in the morning! Fingers crossed for you at the 6 week appointment, hopefully everything will be fine by then x #Picknmix

    January 24, 2016 at 9:37 pm
    • Reply Lisa

      Thanks the next scan is at 9:30am although I’ll have to take all 3 kids with me as it’s half term. Hopefully I’ll make it on time! x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:25 am
  • Reply Kaz & Ickle Pickle (@IcklePicklex)

    Pickle had positional talipes when he was born, so was referred to a hip specialist as routine. All was well and no scan was needed. This is a great post for anyone facing this – it can seem scary. Kaz x

    January 24, 2016 at 8:26 pm
    • Reply Lisa

      Thanks Kaz, I think a lot of it now is routine referrals I should probably have asked more about it when they told me but having just given birth I wasn’t really thinking! x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:24 am
  • Reply Alex lambandbear

    I’m so glad to hear the check up and scan wasn’t as invasive as you initially thought, I would have been picking too! And it’s so nice to hear the hospital were ok with you being late. I mean, seriously, how on earth they thought you would be there by 8:50 is beyond me! xx

    January 24, 2016 at 4:43 pm
    • Reply Lisa

      I know 8:50am!! Still I’m very glad they saw us so quickly, very grateful for the fantastic NHS x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:23 am
  • Reply Lorraine

    Poor Darcy, she really has been through it all. Really glad the doctors picked it up so early have have been investigating as quickly as they have. Hopefully thing improve and your little one can get a break. Really interesting post though as I’d never even head of it before x

    January 24, 2016 at 7:58 am
    • Reply Lisa

      Thanks Lorraine neither had I also goes to show how quickly advise changes since my son was born 7 years ago x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:22 am
  • Reply hellobabysteph

    Jack had clicky hips as a baby and had to have a hip scan too, they used a little wedge to hold him on his side during his scan but he didn’t seem fussed at all as they were so gentle. I hope the next scan is all ok, I’m sure it will be x

    January 24, 2016 at 7:40 am
    • Reply Lisa

      Thanks I’m sure it’ll all be fine x

      January 26, 2016 at 8:21 am
  • Reply Polly Williams

    This post is so interesting, I’ve always wondered how they do the procedure in babies. I suffer from a clicky hip that was never picked up, I can pop it but that’s about all – it never causes me any issues but it’s fantastic they’re now picking up on it in newborns xx

    January 24, 2016 at 7:02 am
    • Reply Lisa

      I’m really glad the scan was so simple and easy. It’s is great that they are checking all newborns so throughly now x

      January 24, 2016 at 7:04 am
  • Reply debrashoppeno5

    Wow little Darcey is certainly going through a lot in her short life. Is it something that she will outgrow? It is good they found the condition so quickly and you are able to help her by having her legs and hips in the frog position.

    January 24, 2016 at 3:06 am
    • Reply Lisa

      I’m hoping that when she’s 6 weeks and has the second scan it will show all is ok. Just trying to do the frog legged position as much as possible although the she doesn’t really like this!

      January 24, 2016 at 7:06 am

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