Christina and Chris Ewing knew early on that something was wrong with their daughter, Abby. Smaller than other children her age, Abby began to have trouble crawling and trying to walk around ages 18 to 20 months. By the time her daughter was 3 years old, Christina, who lives in Evans, Ga., had to remove her from ballet and gymnastics because she couldn’t keep up with other children.
“She always kind of walked with a waddle,” Christina said. “Our pediatrician kept assuring us that everything was fine.”
On a trip to the zoo, 6-year-old Abby began to stop walking and squat. Looking for answers, Christina took her daughter to a new pediatrician. The doctor did an exam and finally provided an explanation: hip dysplasia. “I knew nothing about hip dysplasia, so I was terrified,” Christina said. “Being a nurse, I started doing tons of research.”
In hip dysplasia, the hip socket may be too shallow to hold the ball of the thigh bone. This causes the ball to slip in and out of the socket, which can lead to hip pain and difficulty walking. About one in 1,000 babies are born with the condition. In Abby’s case, the ball remained out of the socket.