Lucy’s story – DDH and Pavlik harness

Blog » Hip Dysplasia (DDH) » Personal Stories

Lucy was breech pretty much throughout my whole pregnancy and was born by cesarean section on 25.02.16. She was absolutely perfect and passed all her checks with flying colours and off we went home with a letter stating as she was breech, she would need an ultrasound scan at some point.  

We went for the scan and found she had issues with her hips and were told we would have to go see the consultant at the local hospital. Off we went with Lucy in a beautiful outfit and a new vest. We sat in the scan waiting room chatting away and a little girl came out of the room in what I now know to be a Pavlik harness and my heart sank. I looked at my husband and said “Lucy is gonna need one of them”, he looked shocked and said “no she won’t, she will be fine”.

After her scan we went to see an amazing female surgeon who showed us the images and explained the issues [Lucy was diagnosed with developmental dysplasia of the hip or DDH] and then, like I feared, got out a brand-new harness and explained it to us. I kind of zoned out and when she started fitting it a tear fell down my cheek. At that moment I thanked my stars I’d put on a fresh vest as we were told Lucy wouldn’t be able to be changed for two weeks.  

We both left the hospital in a daze, we got to the car and tried to put her in a car seat and she looked so uncomfortable I cried all the way home. That night she sobbed and sobbed and I could feel her trying to straighten out her legs and I cried too.  

I was upset at first to take her anywhere as I didn’t want any strange looks or questions. However, as the days went on it got easier; Lucy seemed happy, content, not in any pain or discomfort so that helped a lot.
Two weeks till that bath! The hospital staff were fab and made up a lovely bubble bath and left us to have some time with her, they then showed us what to do and sent us home to get used to our new normal. She wore it for three months and was baptised in it. I hated that harness but now age five, to see what a difference it made, year after year her hips have made it to perfect and we couldn’t be happier.  

She is now a keen gymnast and never stops playing and running around. It seems like so long ago but also not. 

You can find out more about DDH and the Pavlik harness here.