Chloe’s Story

It all happened so fast. 1 day post delivery and during a routine check, the doctor paused and said “oops, hear that? It’s clicking!” I looked over and realized she was maneuvering my daughters hips around. I looked panicked and she assured me “worst case scenario – she wears a harness for a while. Ill give you an appointment with a local ortho ”


I left the hospital and brought my new perfect bundle home and tried to block out the worry until the day of the appt. “it won’t happen to us”. Unfortunately, 3 days later at the orthopedic appointment, the doctor said without hesitation “yep, let me fit her into a harness. We will wear it 23 hours a day for a few months”
I was fine until we got home and called my mother. I was telling her what this weird harness looked like on my perfect baby, and broke down into tears.


Chloe wore the harness all day every day for months. She had ultrasounds every 2 weeks. She had major open wound sores behind her knees that required an ER visit. She never complained – because she didn’t know any better.
The truth is- she doesn’t and will never remember any of what we went through , and in the end – it worked… at 4 months old we weaned out of the harness.
I’ve kept it to remember how lucky I am.
Ill show her when she is older how lucky she was, too.
Thank goodness for the awareness of HD!




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  1. Erin R says:

    Our stories are nearly identical. My daughter was placed in a harness at 2 days out, we were still in the hospital. :( She wore her’s everyday for 4 months. From Dec 2010 to April 2011, and she was finally approved to be out on April 18, 2011! We are so blessed that her HD wasn’t severe enough to require surgery! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Christy Crouch says:

    What a sweet little girl! My daughter, Ella, was in a harness from day 4 until she was 3 months. Our stories are so very similar. I was heartbroken that my perfect baby had to wear that weird looking harness. I missed the sweet newborn photos, wearing a baby sling, and making “baby burritos” with the swaddle (although we did still swaddle her arms, just not her legs).
    It’s hard to believe that it all happened — none of us think about it very often. During the time it was routine, but still sad for me, and now looking back it is just a tiny “blip” in our memories. I am so thankful that Ella’s HD did not require surgery either, as so many children’s do.
    Thank you for posting Chloe’s story, and sharing pictures! It’s nice to be part of a “hip dysplasia family” and know that others have had to go through it. :)

  3. Carrie N says:

    It’s my pleasure to share our story! It was so surreal at the time. As soon as she finished treatment with the Pavlik, we stored it away and moved on. Everytime I see the photos of her wearing it, I get emotional. Luckily for us, in a good way. Surgery was my worst fear, and I still read stories of others who have gone through it all. Every 6 months she has an X-ray, and they told me that this will need t continue until she is at least 12 years old. I still have a hint of fear while in the X-ray room!
    Thanks for the support!

  4. anne rumsey says:

    Wonderful to read your story. We found out our daughter had HD at 15 months. She is ten and a half now and has had five surgeries to date.We will see her doctor next Wednesday and we are praying for good results. I still ask myself why did they not notice it when she was born or did I do something wrong. Thank you for sharing your story.

  5. Mary says:

    Count your blessings that Chloe got an early diagnosis. The only thing to fear is not knowing. Regular checkups will keep you informed That is a good thing!

  6. stephanie S says:

    Dear friend,,
    We went thru this some 25 yrs ago,, yet at that time they did not have or offered the harness. My daughter was put into 6 different size diapers, To say the leasst her bottom looked huge and was abit hard to carry at time. Yet we pulled thru and now she is a beautifull 25 yr old with 3 kids of her own, has some weakness, yet with proper therapy and great courage she doing excellent.
    As so will your beauti,, give her love ans support and the rest will be a brezze.,. Take from a old pro

  7. Cally says:

    Great story! Glad it worked for you, our baby Caitlin has had it all a harnest, plaster and still at 10mth a brace but we too are lucky – she is a happy girl with a bright smile, great sleeper and now adventurous crawler. Caitlin like Chole won’t remember but we will and although emotionsl at times are thankful for the education and support of others sharing HD stories:)

  8. Lydia says:

    I relate to your story… My daughter was diagnosed at 6 days old (17 months ago), and placed in a harness for 3 months… We weren’t told how serious it was until we started seeing the Ultrasounds, and I did some research… It didn’t really sink in that we avoided MAJOR surgery by a miracle until our ortho told us “you should be really thankful, I’ve NEVER had a baby with hips this bad get better in a pavlik period, much less in 2 months (she had to wear it 2 months 24 hrs, and 1 month 12 hrs/day)”! The feeling of “loss” when you have a newborn you can’t cuddle and hold like every one else gets to hold their newborn is indescribable! No one but HD mommys and daddys will ever understand how dark that time can be and is… So glad the pavlik worked for your baby too! I am now expecting a baby boy and praying every day he doesn’t have HD… SO SCARED!!! But I know I’ll have this site for support and that is good to know!

  9. Jennifer S. says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. My 2nd child is a little over 2 weeks old and has been in her Pavlik since day 2. The only thing getting me through is knowing that the odds are in our favor for this to be temporary and of course faith. Thanks again for your story! It helps. :)

  10. Beth H says:

    Hi,
    My baby girl was put in the harness at 6 days. Her hip would dislocate effortlessly. I cried for a day or so but realized that there was nothing I could do but what I was doing. She wore it 6 weeks 24/7. I bought baby leg warmers to be sure her knees and legs stated warm and intact. We were not allowed to take her out, period. But I did remove the legs straps in order to wash behind her knees and change her leg warmers.
    Today is the 6 week mark and I got to bring her home without the harness. She will wear it at night and for long naps for another 5 weeks. If all goes well, she will be harness free at 3 months of age. She doesn’t remember. But I know that I have been a bit more stressed because of it and I am sure that she notices that. I also haven’t really left the house as it is so cold and she can’t wear her bunting or pants. So that is also unfair to all involved. But we will get through this. We must. It is devastating not to be able to hold your baby and feel her skin on yours. Breastfeeding is also a challenge and her latch is not as good because of it.
    I can hear my mom saying, “This too shall pass”.

  11. Meli says:

    This is terrible
    I find this is torture and I don’t want my baby wearing this thing

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