“My Adult Hip Dysplasia Diagnosis Changed My Life”

Hi my name is Amy and I was diagnosed with hip dysplasia at age 19. I’ve had a triple pelvic osteotomy (TPO). I didn’t even know what hip dysplasia was or what the operation would entail. I’ve been struggling with my hips for a very long time and as I’m a dancer it was just getting way too much for me.

I’ve been dancing since I was little and always dreamed of being a professional dancer. I decided I wanted to do it as a career, when I started a BTEC at college studying dance. From then on, I was so determined to make it happen but there was always one thing holding me back… my hip. That’s when I went to the hospital, I needed to get it sorted. Month after month, they kept telling me there was nothing wrong with me. After a lot of physio and scans they couldn’t find anything at all. I was so upset and angry as I knew myself there was something not right, so they asked me if I wanted a second opinion at a different hospital, and I thought “well after everyone I’ve spoken to here, and all the scans, is there any point?”. 

My college course was coming to an end and I needed to make a decision. I followed my dream and applied to stage schools. I worked my absolute socks off to try and get in as there aren’t many places available. I thought whatever this problem is I’m not going to let it stop me, I’m a very active person anyway and always carried on the best I could! I got in to two stage schools and I was over the moon, I couldn’t believe it. I started at Phil Winston’s in Blackpool in September 2016.

I then had my ‘second opinion’ appointment and it was bad news, I got diagnosed with hip dysplasia and also had a tear in the muscle. I had to choose whether or not to have the operation. If I didn’t go ahead with the operation, I would end up with arthritis and a hip replacement by the time I was 30. After he told me what a TPO was and how is it one of the biggest and most painful surgeries you can ever have done, my heart just dropped. Everything I’d worked for had basically just been taken away from me.

I was in massive shock and couldn’t take my mind of it for months. I felt like my dreams had just shattered in to a million pieces and I couldn’t do anything about it. Dance and performing is my passion it’s who I am and it’s in my heart. Knowing they were going to be cutting my pelvis in 3 places and moving it into a different position, then they would be securing it in place with pins and a plate.  

I had to leave stage school and go ahead with the operation, but for months I don’t think I even realised how major the operation was. I wasn’t happy at this point in my life knowing this was ahead of me, but with the support of my family and friends I got through it!

This has honestly been the biggest thing that I will probably ever go through and has been one hell of a tough battle to fight. If you’re about to go through this just remember there is a light at the end of the tunnel and you will get there with good and bad days! I think a lot people are unaware of hip dysplasia, it’s weird to think I could have been scanned and checked at birth and it could have been very different now. If more babies were thoroughly checked at birth, this would eventually reduce the amount of adults being diagnosed with hip dysplasia each year. Therefore potentially reducing the requirement for this major operation which has the capability of altering lives, ambitions and dreams. 

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