Hello everyone, my name is Megan and this is my hip dysplasia journey so far!

Having everything taken away from you at a young age is heartbreaking. I started having hip pain around the age of 12 and it’s as if my whole life was put on hold. I had to quit softball and could hardly run the mile in middle school. We went to a few doctors who said I had growing pains and if the pain persisted for a few more years, then I should come back. Years? My pain gradually got worse and eventually, it got to the point where I could no longer run anymore and even had a hard time walking.

When I was 14 years old I was diagnosed with a torn labrum and impingement in both hips. It was frustrating but at the same time, it was a relief. I had an answer to my pain and there was a simple plan to fix my hips, or so we thought. I had my first surgery at age 14, as a freshman in high school. It was arthroscopic, in other words, less invasive than an open surgery. I was fully recovered within a year but unfortunately started having pain in the other hip.

We went back to the doctor who recommended another arthroscopic surgery. We were pleased with the results of my right hip and went ahead with surgery on the left hip when I was 15, now a sophomore in high school. Recovery went well and I thought I was back to 100%. Little did I know the things that would happen next.

A few months after the arthroscopic surgery on my left hip, my hip fully dislocated. I was rushed by ambulance to a local hospital where I was told my hip had anteriorly dislocated and that it needed to be popped back in place. After this was done, we looked for answers. Why had my hip dislocated in the first place? It was the most traumatic experience ever and the pain was indescribable. We went back to my scope surgeon who reassured us that I was fine and that it wouldn’t happen again. A few months later, after a lot of physical therapy, my hip dislocated again. I was so upset and frustrated. Again? I needed answers.

We researched what could be causing my dislocations and came across hip dysplasia. In the meantime, I had an open surgical dislocation surgery with the scope surgeon where he fixed all the damage that the dislocations had caused. I had many torn ligaments, muscles, and a fracture.

After months of rehab from the open surgical dislocation surgery, I knew something still wasn’t right with my hip. It felt unstable. We pursued the hip dysplasia diagnosis with other doctors and I was eventually diagnosed. I then had to make the decision whether or not to have the PAO. I wanted my life back and so I underwent my PAO in May of 2016. I am by no means 100% pain-free, but my hip is stable and that is huge. I am forever grateful for the stories on this site, you guys helped me tremendously.

There are gaps in my story but that is okay. I did physical therapy for years and tried injections, anything to avoid more surgery. Sometimes though, sacrifices have to be made in order for things to fully work out in the end. Good luck to everyone on this crazy journey, it does get better!!!

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  1. Hannah says:

    hi, megan
    I’m Hannah, i dance competitively and i play volleyball. I was diagnosed with hip dysplasia when i was 13. Now I’m 14 and about to get surgery but I’m scared that something is going to go wrong and i won’t be able to dance or even walk again.

  2. beth says:

    Hello Hannah I have hip dysplasia grade 4 since birth i have had many surgeries but the best surgery was when i was around 18 years old i had a total hip replacement and learned to roller-skate with my left state tightened so i had better control….i also tried cross-country skiing. This surgery made me pain free and i had it in for 35 years!!! if you are in a lot of pain i would say go for its Best of Luck to you. Beth

  3. Pat says:

    My granddaughter has been diagnosed with DDH. She is 6 years old. She is not in pain. After consultation with specialists, half recommended an operation and half say no. What a dilemma.

  4. Megan Weber says:

    Hey Hannah! This is a big surgery but you have so much going for you. Your age and the fact that you’re in good shape will help tremendously. The biggest thing that got me through my recovery was trust. I had to put tremendous trust into a surgeon I met only once before surgery. I remained positive in not only the surgeons abilities, but my own ability to recover and get back to what I loved. I know it is scary but it’ll be the best decision in the long run. You’ll do amazing! Please let me know if you have any questions during recovery or anytime really. This is a big deal but you’ll do great!

  5. Damian says:

    Hey I really appreciate your honesty and openness on your experience. I had two pins in my right hip when I was 15. I was overweight as a Kid lost the weight when I was 20 and have lead an active life playing tennis and exercising regularly and also took up running outdoors in the last 3 years. In the last 10 months I have not been able to stride when running properly and have just been told the other day that I have arthritis and will need a new hip in 2-3 years. I’m 35 and it’s really knocked me for 6. Just needed to say that reading yours and other peoples experiences is reducing the pain

  6. Ada says:

    Hi Megan!
    I’m Ada and I’m 13 years old. I’d like to tell you a bit about my hip dysplasia experience and ask you a few questions if that’s ok. It’snot a very long story. So in the past few months, I’ve been experiencing pain in my lower/middle back and for a while, I thought it was nothing, so I decided not to complain about it because my parents hate it when I do that. I finally told my mom about it and she says I probably just have hip dysplasia like her, and it’s not really a big deal and I should just do some stretches. I’ve been doing stretches and they haven’t been helping. My right hip pops when I do the hip opener exercise, and it sucks because I have to do it as a part of my daily rock climbing warm-up. I also feel a lot of pain when I sit down and sometimes when I stand up. But if the doctor says that someday I’ll need a PAO, is it worth it?

  7. Marie Altenau says:

    Hello, my name is Marie I am 18 years old and am having surgery in about 2 weeks and I was wondering how long after surgery were you able to travel again? I am wanting to travel about 12 weeks after my surgery and with your experience would you recommend?

  8. Natalie Schulze says:

    Hello, this was such an inspiring story and it was very well written. I am creating a blog to share with local hospitals in San Diego to raise awareness for hip dysplasia. The blog is going to be given to new patients that are just diagnosed with hip dysplasia as a way to learn more about the condition and to connect with people who have gone through a similar experience. I would love to share your story on my blog so please email me at so we can be more in touch.

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