Definintions and Questions
Pavlik Harnes
Spica Cast
Practical Tips
Diapering and Bathing
Case Histories
Picture Gallery
Hip-baby Disclaimer

The day I was born was a day of great joy for my parents - the birth went smoothly, they later told me, and all their anxiety about having a baby was forgotten in the joy of their new child - me.

Then their joy was shattered. Ten days later they took me to the doctor’s office. My doctor, Dr. H, held me and checked to see if I was healthy. My mom was standing there very happy, just like a new mother should be. Suddenly a loud scream rang out, and it was from me. My mother, in shock, asked what made me scream like that, and he replied that my leg was out of my hip socket. He said that he had pulled it out!

“Put it back!” my mom screamed.

My mother, in panic, asked why he was doing that. The doctor said that my hips and sockets were not normal but they were deformed. He was going to send us to a specialist immediately. My mom, not knowing what to think of this, thanked the doctor and took me gently in her arms, wondering why the hospital hadn’t noticed this about me when I was born.

At the hospital my mom met my doctor for the next few years, Dr. T. He was the most respected orthodic specialist in the country. He had worked with the worst cases, given lectures to all sorts of students and doctors, and had written a book about hip dysplasia.

When Dr. T looked at my hips, he explained to my mom that this was one of the worst cases of hip dysplasia he had ever seen. He told my mom what was to go on for the next few years: I was to be put in leg braces until my hip sockets grew and curved correctly. However, after one month in my first set of braces, the doctor discovered that my hips were worse than he thought. I spent the next month of my life with my legs in traction, trying to loosen my now uneven hip joints. After that month I was to wear a brace for two years.

My mother, as would any other mother, cried and was sad. So was my dad. They delayed my Hebrew baby naming for a year because of this crisis.

As I went for checkups throughout the next two years, the doctor said I wasn’t making much progress.

Then, at my final two-year check up, the doctor told my parents some dreadful and scary news. He said that since I had not formed normal hip joints over the past two years, I would have to get plastic hips put into my body every two years until I had fully grown. He gave my mother the option of scheduling the surgery in two years or leaving the brace on six more months just in case it might grow. So my mother, hoping and praying very much, chose the six more months.

After six months I went back to the doctor. My mom was frightened. The doctor took some X-rays of me. As my mother and I waited in the waiting room she became very nervous, and me, a toddler by now, didn’t know what was going on.

The doctor came into the office, his face was white like he had just seen a ghost, but he had a smile on his face. He looked at me and told me in a very nice way with a big smile “Alison, have a good life, it’s been nice knowing you.”

My mother, very confused, asked the doctor what was going on. The doctor looked at my mom and told her that my hips had formed perfectly and I was totally fine! My mom was in tears. She thanked the doctor with great joy and relief. Then the doctor replied that she shouldn’t thank him, she should thank someone up there, as he pointed to the sky.

If not for God with Dr. T’s help, and the courage of my parents, I would either be walking with a permanent limp, or I’d be in and out of operations until I turn sixteen.

This changed my life and my family’s life, because we were just starting to become religious Orthodox Jews. This miracle gave my parents more hope and belief in God, to go on with this quest. So here I am now, age 14, in a Jewish school, perfectly healthy and fine, a member of our school’s basketball, volleyball teams, all because of my parents, my doctors, and God.

If you have any questions about this site or would like to make a suggestion, please contact us at hip-baby.org.