Wyatt Whitney, son of Larry-the-Cable Guy and his wife Cara was born with a dislocated hip ten years ago. You can read how this led the Whitney’s to make a big difference in the lives of thousands upon thousands of people. https://hipdysplasia.org/about/wyatt-whitney-story/ Through personal donations and through their Git-R-Done Foundation, this nationally known comedian and his wife provided $6M to study and advocate for hip dysplasia. This was probably the largest gift ever for hip dysplasia advancement and served to focus attention of researchers and the public on this condition: the most common abnormality of newborn infants and the most common cause of hip arthritis in women younger than fifty.
Ten years later it’s time to take a look at some of the achievements made possible by this wonderful family with their support, personal involvement and encouragement:
- First of all, we’re happy to report that Wyatt’s hips are totally healthy by x-ray and by examination. He’s an active boy who is not slowed down by his time in a Pavlik harness.
- This website was developed and now serves almost 4,000 visitors each day from all over the world
- Nearly half a million brochures have been delivered to pediatricians to help explain hip dysplasia to new parents who face this challenging problem with their children
- Public awareness campaigns have helped make “Hip Dysplasia” a commonly known condition along with increased awareness of risk factors and the benefits of early diagnosis.
- Creation of the International Hip Dysplasia Institute – recognized experts in the field of hip dysplasia who gather twice each year to propose research and educational goals to advance the care of people with hip dysplasia.
- Identification of tight swaddling as an increasing cause of hip dislocations and dysplasia. Tight swaddling added as a risk factor to the 2016 DDH Guidelines published by the American Academy of Pediatrics
- Developed classification system to allow comparison of treatments and outcomes among researchers
- Unprecedented multi-national hip dysplasia registry with comprehensive electronic data entry for the study of treatment variations and other aspects of hip dysplasia
- Publication of more than 25 scientific papers identifying percentages, figures and facts about different treatment options
- Development or standardized practice for diagnosis and Pavlik use for DDH along with validated teaching methods and examinations to confirm learning.
- Conducting engineering research to study reasons for treatment failure and to discover improved methods for non-surgical treatment
- Promoting research into prevention through maternal nutrition and early infant care including aspects of babywearing as a possible preventive measure.
The major achievement of the gift from the Whitney’s has been to focus attention on hip dysplasia and to provide encouragement for centers to work together in a coordinated manner to advance our understanding of this common condition. Other conditions have benefitted from similar coordinated efforts but this is the first time that hip dysplasia has had the resources to make major advancements. The IHDI is grateful to the Whitney family for their vision and for their support. We are also very pleased that Wyatt is healthy and has not suffered the difficulties that challenge many other individuals affected by hip dysplasia.