Tonight I finally allowed myself to shed a few more tears over Nora’s hip dysplasia situation. This time, however, they were good ones… tears of relief and joy, letting go of a little worry, and even a little misplaced guilt.
After a very restless night last night, we all got up early this morning to head down to Indy for Nora’s follow up to see 1) if the brace was working, and 2) for how much longer she would have to wear it. All of the research I had done told me that typically the brace is worn for 6 to 12 weeks and then at least part time for an additional 6 to 12 more weeks. And if the brace didn’t work, the next step would be surgery and a hard cast.
I had already mentally prepared myself (this time) to not be so shocked should we get the worst news, but I tried to put it out of my mind for a bit longer while we enjoyed a pleasant detour to have lunch with Tiffany, Calvin and the new bump that is rapidly growing. It was a lot of fun to watch the kids stealing glances with each other and the other restaurant patrons, and garnering lots of compliments on how adorable they were. Even though it was a brief visit, we left in good spirits and headed to the doctor’s office to see what would become Nora next.
Even though she had been a little fussy when we were finishing lunch, by the time we got to Nora’s appointment she was in a good mood again. She thankfully stayed pretty happy through the whole x-ray process (a VAST improvement over last visit) and was still smiling and drooling away when the doctor came in. I had a pretty good feeling as we sat waiting because a nurse had brought in the pictures and her hips looked a lot better, to us at least. Her doctor was thrilled at her improvement too; in fact, when he came in he announced that she really didn’t even need the brace anymore! But, just to be cautious, he recommended we keep her in it for about 8 hours a day, and then we’ll follow up again in two more weeks. After that, he seems to think we’ll just be back on the ‘keep an eye on it’ track with visits every three months.
The best news I was expecting to hear was that she’d be wearing the brace full time for another month! Obviously we’re overjoyed, even though we’re still not in the clear just yet. I’m so grateful to her pediatrician for catching the problem so early and also for the specialist for giving her the right treatment and saving her so much pain and suffering down the road!