In this family we do daughters and we do hip dysplasia. I sometimes call my girls the Spica Sisters since both of them spent nearly 3 months in two spica casts each before the age of 9 months old to fix their respective hip dysplasia.
Before Georgia was diagnosed, in a most traumatic way, at 8 weeks old I had only known our family lab to have hip dysplasia. And even then I didn’t understand what it really was. Now, I know Hip Dysplasia and its course of treatment like the back of my hand.
Hip Dysplasia means that the bones of the hip joint are not aligned correctly. It affects thousands of children and adults each year and is known by many different names:
- Developmental Dysplasia of the Hip (DDH)
- Hip Dislocation
- Congenital Dislocation of the Hip (CDH)
- Loose Hips
Hip Dysplasia prevents the hip joint from developing and functioning properly. In many newborn babies the loose hips right themselves and no treatment is needed. Though if they do not ‘firm up’ on their own and proper treatment is not sought it can lead to complete dysfunction of the joint and cause the child to be wheelchair bound for life. On the plus side, it is very very treatable once found. If found before a child turns one it can often be treated with a Pavlik Harness or Spica Casting and not necessarily surgery, but if its found after one year of age it does mean mandatory surgery. About 1 in 500 live births are affected by hip dysplasia and we hit the jackpot twice. We have not been so lucky with lottery tickets.
This week is our story with our two daughters, their two very different diagnostic experiences of Hip Dysplasia and their course of treatment to correct the problem of Hip Dysplasia so that they can go on to be Olympic Gymnasts or Dance Party enthusiasts, according to their current interests.
For clarification sake, they were not casted at the same time. They are 14 months apart in age and were casted at similar ages even though they were diagnosed at different ages. Here is a picture of each girl sporting their first casts each.