Monday, April 13, 2009

A Surprising Diagnosis

I took Natalie to the orthopedist today.

When she was born her pediatrician noted a "dislocatable hip" and sent us to the orthopedic specialist. By the time she first saw the specialist (at two weeks old) the hip had already apparently corrected itself and was no longer able to be popped out of the joint. The orthopedist thought that all was well but suggested that we do a follow up x-ray at four months (when enough bone has solidified in an infant to be visible) just to be extra cautious. He was so confident that all he would see was a normal hip joint that I almost didn't even keep the follow up appointment since it required a 45 minute drive.

Well, I did keep the appointment and, as it turns out, for good reason. As soon as the doctor looked at the x-ray, I could tell by his silence that not all was well. Natalie has hip dysplasia which means that her hip joint is not forming properly. Left untreated it could cause her to have a limp, early arthritis and likely surgery down the road. The good news is that catching it so early means that we can influence how the joint forms so she will likely make a full recovery without surgery.

Natalie's doctor has ordered a special brace for her that she will wear for the next three or four months to keep positive pressure on the hip socket. It shouldn't bother her (I hope!) although it may delay her reaching certain milestones (such as sitting up) by a few weeks.

For the second time in a month, I am grateful for excellent health coverage and for her amazing pediatrician who caught what was even not immediately apparent to the specialist. Most likely, she will recover fully with no recollection of this ever having happened to her.

Prayers to this effect are appreciated!


Briana Schalow said...

We will absolutely be praying for her (and you!) and her speedy recovery.

Bianca said...

well as a mother of 7 you definitely get quite an ear full and eye full of events! I will definitely keep you and Natalie in prayer. Can you imagine how tiny that brace is going to be to fit around her adorable little legs? Oh she is so precious!

Annie Bizzi said...

You're such a wonderful mom!!

Natalie has already been extremely blessed being born into your family (but we'll prayer for full recovery, anyway!)

Love to you!

The Purnells said...

We will keep you, Natalie and your family in our prayers. Kids have a wonderful way of making a full recovery at this age.

KatieGirl said...

You and yours are as always in our prayers. Babies are made out of a little bit of rubber so I have faith she will be just fine. I hope you are feeling back to normal. All our love

Jennifer HInojosa said...

Hey Suz-
All my best... can you post a photo of her? I bet she has changed since the newborn ones! I would love to see all of them.... maybe on your or Jay's facebook?
Jen Prosi

Anonymous said...

We will be keeping Natalie in our prayers! To have found this out at such a tender age is such a blessing already! I ditto the request for pics!!
Renee Bertenthal