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For children with a body harness or spica cast by hip dysplasia

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Hip dysplasia in two hips

Hip dysplasia in two hips: this is the story of Teun

  • No history in the family and no breech, although older brother with mild hip dysplasia.
  • Discovered at standard check-up at 3 months.
  • Campspreider, Pavlik, Hilgenreiner.
  • Treated from 3 months to 2 years.

Here is the story of Teun, who has hip dysplasia.

Teun is our fifth child and was born healthy. I did have to be induced some weeks earlier than our other four children because of high blood pressure, but otherwise it was a normal pregnancy. Teun was a small boy weighing 2450 grams, but was allowed to go home the next day.

At the age of eight months, it was discovered that our third child, also a boy, had mild hip dysplasia after the health clinic noticed that the legs were different lengths and a double gluteal fold. There is no history of hip problems in the family and he was not born in the breech position. His treatment was quick: three months 24 hours a day in a Campspreider and then three months more only at night.

Because our third child had had hip dysplasia, in accordance with the protocol our two younger children had an echo made of their hips at three months. For Teun they saw that his hips weren’t right and another photo was taken. 

We were immediately referred to the orthopaedist at the hospital. He told us that Teun had bad hip dysplasia in both hips. The treatment began with the smallest Campspreider, because he was still very small for his age. Fortunately he still fitted in the buggy. At the next check-up after three months there was no improvement. Teun’s hips needed to be put in more of a ‘frog’ position and had a Pavlik bandage fitted. It took some time for Teun to get used to this, because he was unable to roll over in the Pavlik and had to learn how to do it all over again. Very slowly things improved, but by then he had been in the Pavlik for 9 months. Teun wanted to stand up but that wasn’t possible in the Pavlik. He was literally hanging onto his playpen. Fortunately he could sit in his TripTrap high chair in the Pavlik and could sit with me on my bicycle in his Bobike bicycle seat. It looked like he was going to dislocate his femoral head, but luckily it stayed in its socket and he had a Hilgenreiner fitted. The Hilgenreiner is somewhat heavier than the Pavlik and it took at least a week for Teun to get used to it. After that he was able to do the things that he could already do with the Pavlik. With the Hilgenreiner on he no longer fits in the buggy and then we take the body harness off for a little while. He still enjoys his bean bag and has at last learned to walk around the table.

Teun is now 18 months old and it now seems that his right hip is fine and his left hip still has dysplasia. He must wear a body harness until his second birthday and in the meantime we still visit the orthopaedist for check-ups.

What a difference compared to 10 years ago when our third child had hip dysplasia and there was so little information available. There were no specially adapted clothes at all. We are so pleased that Teun is able to wear nice trousers that also fit well. Teun still has to learn to walk by himself, but he is wriggling happily around the room on his bottom.