At the weekend we had a day trip to our local hospital. We know the place pretty well having spent more than enough time there in the past. As most people know Erin has had hip dysplasia. It’s one of those things where I never know if she HAS ddh or if she has HAD ddh. When does having no hip socket and needing surgery and knowing that her future may be tainted because she was late diagnosed become the past? She is on yearly check ups and will be for some time yet. I fear the worst because all the literature tells me too. The research papers all remind me that a delayed diagnosis can be a life sentence. I read everything I can to educate myself about hip conditions.
She may not be forever fixed, but she is fixed for now. The femur sits in its man made socket. A little bit of bone hacked off from where it can regenerate was borrowed to tip her socket into a more favourable position. For more than four hours her surgeon and his team took their time carrying out complex surgery on her little body.
Yet her diagnosis was so delayed and she walked on that flat socket for months before surgery. I have always known that because she was failed by those newborn checks that one day we may pay the price. I have buried those feelings over the past couple of years. Instead I rejoiced as she learnt to run and jump. The physical scars have faded. They snake across her hip joint and bury themselves in her bikini line. Her badge of bravery I tell her.
On Sunday she was diagnosed with irritable hip, it happens to be on the same side she has / had ddh. It happens be very painful for her. It makes her limp and it makes her cry. It may or it may not be anything to do with ddh. I knew of the condition as soon as it was mentioned as it is something I have come across in my reading about hip problems. She rested on Monday, did a half day at school on Tuesday and a full day Wednesday. Yet today she has struggled and we seem back where we were last Sunday.
It has bought back all sorts of emotions for me and I’m scared. I briefly saw her Xrays on Sunday and caught a quick glimpse of them and didn’t spot anything untoward but I still fear the worst.
My five year old is struggling and so am I. It has bought back the guilt of not knowing that for two years she had a dislocated hip. It reminds me that DDH has left emotional scars as well as physical. I don’t trust the doctors we have seen about this irritable hip diagnosis. What if they have missed something again? What if what if.
As I sit here typing I just keep telling myself I would have noticed something major in the Xray. I tell myself that tomorrow I will ring her surgeons secretary and ask him to review the Xrays. I will hold my breath to see if she is limping tomorrow.