Yana’s Story

We had an appointment to meet with a pediatric orthopedist to check on Yana’s hips since she was a breech baby she was at risk of having hip dysplasia. Where there is a problem with the formation of the hip joints. We had been told since she was born to keep an eye on this. She was checked at the hospital and the doctor’s office each time for the “tell tale” sign of a clicking noise in her hips. None of these things were ever a concern for our pediatrician.

He told us to get a routine ultrasound at 3 months to check the development and at that time they did notice that her left hip was not completely in place. He recommended we have a follow up ultrasound to recheck at 9 months.

Time flew by and she was a year already walking for over a month. We took her for the repeat ultrasound and the doctor called to say it was still out of place and she needed to see the orthopedist, which we scheduled immediately.

We meet the doctor and he asks us some questions. The first question was why we were going for ultrasounds and not x-rays? We said that is what our doctor recommended. He then went on to say this condition could not be diagnosed with ultrasound after 9 weeks of age. This is where my sense of panic started to kick in. He looked Yana over had her walk down the hall and assessed her gait. He said he doesn’t think she has it because she walks so well and then added but if she does it will be very bad considering her age. So he sends us into the x-ray room and we held her down for a few pictures.

He calls us out into the hall where he has her images on a large screen. In a sympathetic voice he says mom she has hip dysplasia. I said “fuck” and looked at Anthony to see his concerned face on. As he goes over where her bones are and where they should be I feel myself welling up with tears. He said lets start the questions. We ask what now? And he says immediate surgery and a cast. I’m trying to hold it together but I can feel myself getting sick. I told Anthony I have to go to the bathroom and he tells me to sit I’m going to faint. I start shaking and sweating and gasping for air and they wheel me into another room and start putting cold packs on me. Meanwhile Anthony is holding a screaming Yana. After I get my shit together the doctor comes back in and goes over all our questions and concerns.

Basically the first less invasive procedure is called a “closed reduction” which she will have to be put under anesthesia and injected with dye as he tries to get her hip as close to where it should be then she will be casted from her stomach to her toes and sent for an MRI to see if this is even an option. If it is she will come home with the cast and we will just keep checking the progress over a period of several months.

If after the MRI it looks like this is not an option that will work she will go back up to surgery have the cast removed and come home to recover and scheduled for an “open reduction” which involves major surgery.

This all happened Friday and her procedure is scheduled for this Thursday. As you can imagine Anthony and I are in complete shock and have been really just floating along these last couple days. I know this is something that HAS to be done. But so many things are weighing on me:

That this could have be diagnosed in infancy and easily fixed without surgery.

This was supposed to be our chance for girl time trips to the park and classes.

She’s worked so hard to catch up to Ethan to be able to walk and now be immobile from the waist down and what this will do to her mentally.

The thought of her being under anesthesia and having surgery is ridiculously scary. We are now almost a year and a half out from her first procedure and she is in her rhino at night only. We go back next month for XRAYS to see if there was enough growth-if not next step is major surgery.




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  1. Donna Bayless says:

    I just wanted to leave a comment as my hip dysplasia wasn’t found until I was 4 years old. I underwent about a year of surgeries, and afterwards became a very active and happy little girl. Yana will do fine and my prayers are with you. I am now almost 41 years old, have 4 children of my own and have lived a full happy life.

  2. Kate says:

    I wanted to comment to let you know that you arent alone. My husband and i are going thru a similar story with our two month old son. He was also breeched for the majority of my pregnancy and they heard the click when he was only a few days old. He has had two different braces and it looks like he will need a closed reduction. I feel the same fears as you and i am dreading having to watch him go thru it. Know that you arent alone and my prayers go out to you and your family.

  3. Karen McKenzie says:

    My daughter just turned 38 November/12.
    This could be our story with some adjustments. No breech birth, just not diagnosed till she started to walk at one year. New doctor ( still our family doctor) saw her first time, diagnosed her, and she was in hospital the next day.
    I was a single mom with a two year old as well.
    I am sad to see families still going through this seemingly grossly mis-managed condition, when it doesn’t have to be this way.
    I wish them all the best and stay strong with the medical community.
    Ironically today my daughter and I are going to an art exhibit in Toronto. She has had pain in her hip as an adult and will need a replacement at some point.
    I cannot remember those days and weeks through traction, surgery, casts with her. with tearing up.. it was very hard.
    Stay strong! there are others who know your pain and your hopes for your baby girl.
    Karen

  4. christina lane says:

    I just wanted to let you know your not alone. My daughter was not diagnosed until she was 3. Three days after her 4 birthday she had an open reduction, she had two different casts. She had surgery this past November two days before Thanksgiving to have the hardware removed we go back to see th Dr in February to see if everything is ok. But as far as I can see she is doing awesome still has a slight limp but she keeps up with her siblings just fine. All will work out fine ..stay strong…

  5. Ashleigh says:

    Wishing you all the best through this scary time, all you want is for your child to be happy and healthy. And given you took all the right steps and it was still missed I can imagine the shock would be immense. I had a similar story with my baby girl. She wasn’t breech, but a little early. She was given the all clear for the tell-tale signs at hospital discharge at birth, by the maternal child health nurse at 2, 4 and 6 weeks, by the GP. But I just knew something was wrong! There was no click as such but her left leg felt stiff when I changed her nappy. I pushed for an ultrasound at about 8 weeks, and even then the sonographer who interpreted the results got it wrong (so very wrong). We were told it was just immature hips and they will sort themselves out. But I wasn’t convinced so I sent the scans to the Royal Children’s Hospital for a second interpretation, and they called me in almost immediately. Turns out she had severe hip displasia and her hips were almost completely dislocated. Millie was put in a DB brace for 6 months full time, and she is finally all good. I just keep thinking how bad it could have been had I not pushed for some further investigation. We put so much trust in doctors, but sometimes they don’t always get it right. Best of luck and wishing you all a speedy recovery.

  6. Cally says:

    Sad to hear it wasn’t picked up earlier, our gp picked Caitlin’s up at 6weeks and she been throught it all, you name it we done it! Now 10mths and still in a brace 23/7 as both hips were out so badly :( Caitlin has amazing spirit and only the first week with plaster (12wks in total) was the hardest on us all. She crawls but development will be delayed. I am sure your little girl Yana also has a wonderful spirit and will be back to herself in no time. Hugs to both you and Yana

  7. Kelsey says:

    We are getting ready to have the closed reduction in August. Our doctor has us waiting until my daughter is 5 months before he feels comfortable putting her under GA. I was wondering if you could tell me where you got the seat that Yana is sitting in in the top picture? We are trying to prepare as much as we can before the surgery and I have not seen anything like that before. I think it is exactly what I’m looking for to help with Emberlyn’s meal times.

    I hope that everything works out for your beautiful Yana. And honestly I felt the exact same as you through all of this. It definitely is not easy but I just keep telling myself that it could be worse. :) Good luck and hugs to both you and Yana!

  8. Shellie says:

    My grandson was just diagnosed with Hip dysplacia and he is 9 years old. I had noticed him running over his shoes and finally said maybe they should take him in to an pediatric orthopedic in which they did and found this out. 1 leg longer than the other the hip dysplasia. I cannot believe the doctors never noticed this until we finally noticed. He will be going to a Pediatric orthopedic surgeon soon. Hopefully they will tell us they can help him. He has not been in pain.

  9. Kamari's Mom says:

    My daughter had had three surgeries due to being born with DDH, one of those surgeries to remove pins that were
    Placed in her socket joint. She had her last appointment a week ago, and they are saying that they want another one.. I can’t even begin to tell anyone how I feel

  10. Priya says:

    Hi
    Any updates on your baby .I hope she is doing good .I am in almost same situation with my baby in spica for past 4 weeks

  11. Mallory T says:

    Update: Yana is now 6 years old and doing amazing. We were released from her frequent visits a couple years ago. After her casts she was fitted for a few braces and eventually learned to walk,run and climb with them on. Her closed reduction worked and she is now back to normal. There is hope! She was not bothered by it at all-if we ask her about it she says she loved her candy “tattoos” on her casts. Wishing you all the best!

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