Well, hello there, my name is Bailey-Ann, and I would like to share my story with hip dysplasia. When I was about nine months old, I was adopted from China. While I was the Chinese orphanage, I was bundled up so tightly under an overabundance of layers, that I could not move a muscle. As I grew up, my parents and family knew that there was something unusual with my gait combined with certain physical limitations, which only deteriorated as time passed, which meant numerous visits to many different doctors. Growing up, as a result of the hip dysplasia, I was unable to sit “like a lady.” Not having the ability to sit like the rest of the girls, I developed feelings of abnormalities, and soon after, I started to question my femininity.
During my younger years, I was never picked on for my hip dysplasia. I was just another kid in the classroom. Unfortunately, as I grew up, as puberty started, the hip dysplasia become worse and more noticeable. As a result, I remember many, many years of taunting, teasing, bullying, abuse as a result of the hip dysplasia, my abnormal gate, my limping, and the fact that I could not sit like a lady, the fact that I had early onset arthritis and other issues that shall not be mentioned. As a result of the incessant abuse, I had major depression, self-harm, issues with body dysmorphic disorder for a long time—due to my various health issues and the side effects of the treatments, and even suicidal intentions and actions. I kept my parents in the dark for quite some time about everything to shield them, but they found out. After they found out, I got treatment.
Moreover, just when I thought my life was back on track and everything would be okay; however, in my junior year, something else happened, I got sick (not from the abuse). It was apparent that I had physical limitations and abnormalities; however, there was still no definitive diagnosis. Unfortunately, I was in an immense amount of pain. The pain I felt was like nothing I have ever felt before. spent my junior and senior years of high school, juggling academics with hospital visits, procedures, and tests to find a diagnosis and a treatment plan for my orthopedic and other physical health issues. Finally, after all of the years of seeing doctor after doctor after doctor and undergoing tests after test and test, doctors were able to give me a definitive diagnosis and treatment plan. I have DDH (developmental dysplasia of the hip). To treat this condition, doctors said that I would have to undergo not one, but two corrective surgeries. The summer before I came to college, I had a femoral de-rotational osteotomy. To successfully correct my physical deformity, the orthopedic surgeon had to break my leg in three places and nail a rod to hold permanently hold my femur and to my hip and place screws to correct the deformities.
I received treatment to correct my abnormal gait, to gain better range of motion, and to fix my legs and hips so that I can walk normally. Before my freshman year of college, I decided to have my right hip operated on for the right side was worse than the left and the left side next. During my stay at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, my parents noticed immense, positive changes. While in the hospital, I was able to close my legs for the first time. As of now, I am recovering from both surgeries, I got contacts, and I made other aesthetic modifications to basically make myself over and to slowly boost my self-esteem. I am currently able to walk straight for the first time in my life. Furthermore, I am currently a premedical student at Austin Peay State University.
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