Finding out six week old baby has Hip dysplasia

Since having children I have found out about all manner of ailments… And baby number two is certainly throwing some new ones at me. We have had paronychia, umbilical granuloma and now hip dysplasia (all of which have required me to hit google!).

Without doubt hip dysplasia is the big one which will have the biggest impact on the little lady’s life.

Last week we took her for a routine check that all breech babies have to check their hips since they have been sat like a frog for nine months. When the boy said he was taking time out of work to come I was a bit like “Why it is just a routine check, she’ll be fine”. But with mum looking after little Miss off we went to Southampton General…

When we arrived the waiting room was heaving and I did consider knocking it on the head and walking out (after all she was totally fine…). We watched as babies and their parents went into a little room and then came out all smiles heading for the door.

Then it was our turn.   I stripped baby down so the sonographer could scan her hips. The nice chap scanned her left hip and informed us that everything looked perfect. Then on to the right hip and the chatty sonographer was suddenly silent. Then came the news that little one has dysplasia of her right hip and would need probably need immediate treatment. ‘The Prof’ was called in and he confirmed that we needed to get her in a harness right away. Now I did not feel sad or panicked, I just felt focused. The little lady needed some help and it is my job to make that is easy as possible on her.

So we left the room and unlike all the other parents before us we turned left and headed to the treatment room with the eyes of the waiting parents burning holes in the backs of our heads.

As the harness was fitted the nurse explained all about it and how it worked. The dos and don’ts of a pavlik harness and the things baby would not be able to do for a little while (bath, swim etc). She told us we were very calm and that most parents are really upset by seeing their child fitted in the harness – but I wasn’t.

As I picked up my little girl and left the hospital, clutching a pile of literature, I began to worry about my reaction perhaps that made me a bad mum? That afternoon we got to grips with changing a nappy with the harness in place and the ‘krypton factor like’ challenge that is getting her dressed – and still no tears came. I read websites and information leaflets telling me how I am probably feeling (upset, worried etc) – and then I got cross!

I am not going to cry and panic about this for her. We are really lucky. This has been picked up early and is being treated. She will never remember this and will avoid pain and discomfort later in life. We are going to make this as easy as possible for her and treat her like the adorable little girl that she is.

It is also lucky that having the harness on seems to have been positive for her. On the first night she slept like a dream and has never shown any signs of distress. In fact, I think she actually likes it!

I have done some research to find out some top tips on how to change her nappy without getting the harness covered in poo and what clothes she can wear (thank god it is summer!).

Don’t get me wrong I wish she wasn’t in the harness so we could splash around with her in the bath and give her proper cuddles but all of those things will come and will be all the sweeter when they do.

She is completely unware of what is happening and is a happy, healthy little baby. I will remain thankful that she is being looked after by amazing doctors who are fixing her poorly hip.

In the meantime she is totally rocking the harness…

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