Hello, my name is Paige and I am 19 years old. I was finally diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia September of 2015.


I have gone my whole life not knowing what could be wrong. I was very active in volleyball, soccer, softball, all kinds of things and just shrugged the pain off thinking it was due to sports. When I moved to Westfield, Indiana I quit all sports. I was the new kid going into my freshman year and decided I needed to focus on myself and school. All throughout High School I had this constant pain in my right hip. It began to pop every time I would walk or move from any position to another. I kept telling everyone it hurt but it kept being blown off like it was nothing. January of my junior year (2014) I finally went to the doctor to see what was wrong. The first doctor I saw told me everything was fine, that it is normal for a girl of my age to have what they called “snapping hip”. The doctor told me I would be fine, that he has seen hundreds of girls with this problem and only one had to have surgery (make that two). He wrote me a script for therapy for three months. After those three months were up I felt okay, and only went one more month before I had to find a new doctor because I knew something was wrong.

I went to this new doctor and he told me I tore my labrum and had too much bone on the cup part of my joint on the left side (not even the side I originally went to the doctors for). Surgery was scheduled for July 3, and that is where it continued to go downhill. I had an arthroscopic surgery to fix my torn labrum and shave down my cup. I had an awful recovery, I would throw up every time I would move and I even found out that I was allergic to my medicine (hydrocodone). I went through my next three months in therapy hoping everything would get better.


Right after I ended therapy I started noticing the pain in my right hip was back, so I went back to the doctors. More MRIs and X-rays to find the same thing, torn labrum and apparently too much bone on my hip again. Next surgery scheduled for December 16th, 2014. After I woke up from surgery and was brought back into my recovery room the doctor came in and said “this is a very common thing in dogs” (not sure why he told us that) Then my dad turned to me and said “oh so what kind of bread are you?” and my response was “the pretties bread you will ever see duh.” I spent my Christmas sleeping from all my pain medicine, not a fun way to spend it. I went through three more months of therapy (nine months all together so far) and again I was hoping everything would be fixed this time. Not much time went by before I realized I am not quite done yet.


I went back to the doctors to have more MRIs and more x-rays for this time to be told I tore my labrum again, and I had extra bone on the femur as well. Third surgery scheduled for May 8, 2015. This was the hardest one to recover from because it was right at the end of my senior year, I had projects, finals, even graduation. I took my first steps after this surgery as I walked across the stage to get my diploma. I again had three more months of therapy (12 months all together). I went to my last doctors appointment and I was told everything looked great, that it was going to be my last visit ever for my hips because nothing else is wrong or could go wrong, right in time for my doctor to move to L.A. I have never been more excited. I thought I was going to be able to enjoy summer and enjoy my freshman year of college, but unfortunately I was wrong, again.

I got to enjoy my summer pain free thankfully, then I moved to attend Ball State University. Around September 2015 I started to have worse pain. This time instead of just popping my hip would actually lock up to the point where somehow else had to come either bend it or unbend it for me bc i would lose the felling in my leg and the ability to bend or straighten it. I went to a new doctor, my third one already, and I got more tests done. I was then diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia. My heart dropped, I felt like all the other surgeries were for no reason, which come to find out they were. My old doctor should have caught the Hip Dysplasia, which would of saved me from three other surgeries. The new doctors told me that my old doctor made it worse by shaving down the cup because he gave me less coverage on my femur. My first PAO was scheduled for December 18th, 2015. I did not know what to expect, all I knew was that it was way worse than all the arthroscopic surgeries I had.Recovery has been hard, especially with the who numb patch on the upper outside thigh which is extremely sensitive. Today is five and a half months are my PAO and I am still on my long journey through recovery.

My left hip is still in question, it causes me pain but rarely. I will have my first doctors appointment for it in a few months, fingers crossed its good, but who knows. The doctor told me that I will know him the rest of my life because I will have a full hip replacement when I am about 30 years old.

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  1. Robby Garner says:

    Hi Paige,

    My hip dysplasia was diagnosed when I was 2 years old. I spent 6 months in a body cast from my waist down. That didn’t work, but I made it to age 11 before the pain was so bad I was referred to Scottish Rite hospital in Atlanta. They told my parents that unless something was done, the nerve damage would confine me to a wheelchair for the rest of my life. I had two Steele osteotomies and femur bending and cutting. I was in the body cast again twice for a total of about a year. I missed 2 years of school. Those surgeries were excruciating, and getting out of that cast entailed horrific physical therapy. The pain came back when I was in college and I lived with intense stabbing pain in my right hip. I tried to limit my activities, but also wanted to do what others my age were doing. At age 47 I finally had my right hip replaced. I am no longer in pain. I could move my hip the next morning after the surgery – no cast! My doctor said that was “old stool.” He is younger than me. I will eventually have my left hip replaced, but it will be more complicated because of the bent femur. It doesn’t hurt like the other one did. I hope your doctors have finally found the root of your problems, and that you live a full and rewarding life. You deserve a medal.

    Take care,

  2. Paige W says:

    Hello Robby, thank you for sharing your story with me! That is crazy what you went through, if anyone deserves a medal it’s you! They have finally found the source of the problem, I was born with hip dysplasia but it was never bad enough to catch it until I stopped playing sports. My first surgery gave me so many unnecessary surgeries that it actually worsened my his dysplasia! I’m doing a lot better though, until I get my hip replacement which I was told I would receive around the age of thirty! I’m glad you’re doing so much better!!
    Thank you for taking the time out of your day to reply to my story, means a lot!

  3. Debbie says:

    Hi Paige, wow, you’ve really gone through so much at such a young age! My daughter is 16 and she has been going through right hip pain for the last two years. Your story sounded a lot like yours. She is very active and involved in sports. She had to stop cross country but she does continue to swim competitively and playwater polo. Water sports seem to be a lot easier on her hip. She has constant hip popping just like you described. Unfortunately her first doctor did not recognize her hip dysplasia and we had to go to a gastroenterologist, a gynocolgist, oncologist, and finally a university level orthopedic surgeon. My jaw dropped to the floor when within 10 minutes of being there and having Dandered x-ray both he and his resident knew immediately that she had hip dysplasia. She is scheduled for surgery on January 3, long way off. She is having a PAO. Of course, as a teenage girl, she’s worried about missing a number of things in high school she will have to be off for at least 8 weeks. I’m just wondering what your recovery was really like. Were you able to manage your pain in the first few weeks? Were you able to manage your pain within the first month? You did say that you had a very long recovery andyou still have a lot ahead. I’m just wondering if you wouldn’t mind describing your recovery in a little more detail and how long it took before you were able to function and get around reasonably.

    I’m so sorry for what you’ve gone through but appreciate any assistance that you can give to others.

    Debbie E. –

    • Paige W says:

      Hello Debbie,
      My recovery wasn’t as bad as I thought but it’s a lot of work. I was on the couch and not moving for about a month because my leg felt very heavy and very stiff! After about a month and a half I would go out to do little things to help keep my mind off of the pain. The worst part is that everything feels like it’s a lot of work. I was only on crutches for three months and about a month after I was off I was able to do more. I was able to go out and walk around for longer amount of times without pain or feeling worn out! Just tell her to make sure she takes it easy! Do everything you’re told to do and she will heal up real fast. I had most of my surgeries in high school so I can understand how she feels about missing things, it does suck missing out on the school events, but let her know that when its all over and she’s pain free she will 100% think it’s worth it!

  4. Lauren says:

    Hi Paige,

    I’m also 19 and can relate so much to your story!

    I was diagnosed with hip dysplasia at 9 months. My right hip was dislocated and I was put into a spica cast as a baby. I attended yearly x-ray/consultant appointments throughout my childhood and the doctors seemed to think I was okay.

    I started to experience pain again at around 11-years-old and my doctors shrugged it off as growing pains. I’m sure some even thought I was lying!

    I’ve been experiencing chronic pain, instability and stiffness similar to what you mentioned in my hips since that age and my new consultant has finally told me that hip dysplasia is still a problem. My sockets are turned back , I have a tear to my cartilage and need an arthroscopy to look inside and also cut a muscle/tendon on the outside with a possible osteotomy afterwards. Both hips are painful, one more than the other like you mentioned too.

    It’s sad how little support people our age are given with this illness. It controls my life for certain and when trying to research, I’m normally faced with info for parents with babies recently diagnosed or dog owners!

    Get well soon, I hope they fix you up this time!


    • Paige W says:

      Hello Lauren,
      Not that I’m glad someone understands me, but at the sametime I am! It is hard and it does take over your life and I agree that there should be more info out there about us teenager girl or anyone other than babies and dogs! It’s a scary thing to go through and props to you for dealing with it for so long! No one believed that it happened to me either until my last Doctor figured it out within ten minutes! I hope you’re doing so much better or if you haven’t had your surgery yet then I hope you recovery as fast as possible and get back to your daily life! PAOs are scary and not fun, but I promise it’s worth it. To this day I still have a little bit of pain at random times, but nothing compared to before! Good luck with all!

  5. Meghan B says:

    I was diagnosed with hip dysplasia in my left hip 2 days ago. I’m 16 turning 17 in 2 weeks. For over 2 years I have seen 4 different doctors. I played soccer and softball so my first doctor thought I had a stress fracture. He never showed me my xrays or MRIs so when I found out the stress fracture didn’t exist I was so upset. My next doctor told me it was in my head and I was psyching myself out. I went through 3 MRIs, a fluid MRI & 7 xrays. My third doctor decided I had a labrum tear (I did not). Once again I was never shown my Xrays, we didn’t go through with surgery for it thank god. 2 days ago I went to see my now fourth doctor who told me it was clearly evident on all of my MRIs and Xrays that I was born with hip displaysia and nobody caught it for almost 17 years. I’m planning on getting surgery but I’m very scared, any helpful tips?

    • Paige W says:

      Hello Meghan,
      Don’t be scared! Everything will turn out amazing for you! I was beyond terrified and now I’m beyond happy I did it! Some tips I have for you are to take it slow! I’m the type of person where I hate not doing something and being stuck on the couch for so long was awful but you have to be patient. The time will come where you can begin to do things. Take things slow, especially once you can walk again! Do everything you’re told to do even if you don’t want to or you don’t think it works, because it really does! Ice it multiple times a day BC it will be very bruised and swollen for a while and to help he stiffness ice it! Take you’re meds as need, not every four hours like it says, all that will do is make it harder to lean off them! I become addicted to my meds BC I thought that was the only way it’d feel better! If you do take them every four hours (or whatever amount of time it says) make sure you plan it to where you take a pain pill before you go to bed, it will make you way less restless and easier to get comfortable! Good luck with all of these, I’ll be praying for you and let me know if there is anything else you want to know or want to talk about it. You can email me at

  6. MJ Sharp says:

    Hi Paige, thanks for sharing your story. Well done for staying positive as well – sounds like you’ve had a time of it.
    I am a student physiotherapist in the UK with DDH. I have recently started re-writing a blog about it – aimed at DDH sufferers and health professionals. Would you mind if I shared a link to your story on one of my posts? It highlights the need for health professionals to pursue a correct diagnosis for hip pain.
    Keep up the good work, you’re doing great!
    – M-J

    • Paige W says:

      Hello MJ,
      Thank you for your support! You are more than welcome to share the link to my story! I am here to inform and help people as well as you! I appreciate all you’re doing for us! Thank you for reaching out to me! Cannot wait to see it on your blog!!
      Thank you again,

  7. Joe O. says:

    Hi Paige,

    I was so to hear about the needless surgeries you were out through, especially at such a young age. My story is eerily similar. My parents began noticing a problem with my gait as soon as I began to walk, and after several trips to the Mayo Clinic as a toddler, I was diagnosed with a Tibial torsion. They were told there was not much that could be done. As I got older and going through school, I did walk with a pronounced limp. I later found out that there’s a name for it: Trendelenburg sign. Of course, I was the victim of teasing by my classmates as well as asked countless times why I walked with a limp. I was always on the “chunky” side so around the age of 20, I lost a tremendous amount of weight and the pain became so severe that I went to an orthopedic surgeon. The minute I walked into his office, he said he knew what the problem was, but wanted to confirm it with x-rays. Yes, I was born with a dislocated left hip. My parents were floored, especially since they were both in the medical profession. The doctor was kind and understanding, but told me that very little could be done to remedy it, but surgery. However, he encouraged me to wait until I was a lot older in order to avoid having it replaced more than once in my lifetime. That was 25 years ago!! I haven’t had it replaced yet. I believe I have some back and knee issues as a result, but taking it a day at a time as I know it will need to be replaced eventually. My left leg is smaller in height and width as a result as well as I have a smaller left foot. However, I think, for me, the limp has always been the most difficult part as it has made me self-conscious. Anyway, I’m glad that you’re on the right course now. It is nice to know that others can share in my story. At one time, I thought I was the only one in the world afflicted with this and no one could understand what I went through over the years. Take care and best to you. Joe…..

    • Paige W says:

      Hello Joe,
      Thank you for reaching out to me! It is crazy how many doctors will look right through it and then one day a new doctor knows exactly whats wrong in minutes! I have to agree with you on a lot of things, the limping, being made fun of, feeling like you’re alone! It is all scary and not fun whatsoever! That is why I am so thankful that I was introduced to this website to not only tell my story but to read and hear that I am not alone, I have people just like me and people trying to help with it! Now that is an amazing feeling! I hope that with time you will be the best you can! Take care!!!!

  8. Nicole says:

    Another similar story! I was 15 when I was diagnosed after severe and chronic pain after a bad fall from a horse. Many many doctors,Mri, misdiagnosises, being told I’m faking it was finally discovered. (When my mom rushed me to the emerg of the best paediatric hospital in my country) 3 weeks later I had a PAO. Fast forward to today I am 26 and have been in excruciating pain again for over 2 years. Back in that cycle of finding someone who believes you and will treat you at this young age, correctly.
    Send me a msg if you want to talk! I haven’t been able to find any type of support or Facebook groups to talk and share stories

  9. Chelsea says:

    Hi Paige,

    I was just curious who your doctor was and where the surgery was performed? I’ve just been diagnosed with HP, FAI, and a torn labrum and live in the Indy area. Curious about what the recommended activity level is when fully recovered as well! Thank you!!

    • Paige W says:

      Hi Chelsea,

      My Surgeons name is Dr. Swann. He is located at Methodist Sports Medicine in Carmel and in Greenwood! Dr. Swann was a great doctor and did an amazing job! His nurses were very helpful and sweet and really showed that i was their priority!

  10. Cara says:

    Paige- your story sounds similar to mine. I’ve had three hip arthoscopies and when I told the doctor I was still in pain, he looked at me like he thought I was crazy. I’m scheduled for a PAO next month with Dr. Sink at HSS in New York and I am both excited and nervous. It sounds like yours went well, how are you feeling today? Are you back to full activities?

    • Paige W says:

      Hello Cara,
      Don’t ever let a doctor tell you how you feel! Stand your ground. Afterward id tough, do not give up though! For me, I am not doing too well, but everyone is different so do not let this get you down! I only had a PAO on the right but I need it on both! My left hip is not doing well which means either PAO or hip replacement. My right hip keep locking up on me! My doctor did tell me though that these PAOs were not a permanent fix for me! They told me I had a maximum of 10 years before a hip replacement overall. Even though I am in pain it is not constant, only certain times. Mostly when I sit for too long. I can run and jump and do everything I want to do. I am not cleared for contacts sports quite yet! If you have any other questions or concerns or just need someone to talk to you can email me at

  11. Yujia Chen says:

    Hello, my name is Yujia Chen and I am 25 years old. I was finally diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia when I graduated from the Univ.What’s different from others here l come from China.I have had a PAO on the left but I need it on both! Today is two months of my PAO and I am still on my long journey through recovery.Tf you like,contact me by email,Wish you the best!

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