Supplies for Hip Spica Cast – Post DDH Surgery

In honor of Baby Hip Health Week 2012, here is a list of supplies that came in very handy for me while my daughter was in her spica cast:

1. Bean Bag Chairmy #1 MUST HAVE! You need a place for your baby to hang out and she won’t fit in many places anymore. A bean bag chair works great! Sara often fell asleep in hers and her surgeon said to keep her in a half reclined state as much as possible during her recovery.

2. New Boba 3G Baby Carriermy #2 must have! Since Sara didn’t fit in the grocery cart, I had to have some where to put her during shopping excursions. The Boba was big enough for my husband to carry her and easy enough to use for me to get her on and off alone – a big necessity.

3. Baby legs- very handy for cold weather since pants don’t fit. I highly recommend baby legs – if there’s no bar on the cast. I found a great sale and stocked up. My favorite pair were Halloween ones with bones on them – they were our good luck legs for healthy hip growth.

4. Shirts, onsies, flouncy dresses in one-two sizes larger than her normal size. Some of her old clothes fit, but not well. Going up 1-2 sizes seemed to do the trick. I stocked up on some clothes at Goodwill so I didn’t have to worry about them being ruined by the spica cast.

5. Duck Tape – sure wish I would have seen this MIZZOU duct tape while Sara still needed it…Duct tape came in really handy for “freshening” up her cast and a variety pack of duck tape was one of the favorite Christmas presents my kids received. Can you say country kids?

6. Moleskin – see if you can get some from your doctor, but if not, you might want to buy some. It comes in super handy for protecting not only baby’s skin, but also YOURS!

7. Incontinence pads, diapers of various sizes, flash light, hair dryer – diapering’s tricky in the Spica. You might want to have a variety of supplies on hand as you figure out how to diaper. The flashlight is a MUST HAVE to check for skin problems hidden under the spica. The hair dryer also helped me out more than once. I blogged more about diapering and supplies here.

8. Baby Advil & Tylenol – helpful right off the bat when the pain is bad (we gave this in between her doses of prescribed meds). There is some evidence of Motrin impairing bone growth, so check with your surgeon before you give lots of does of Motrin.

9. Medicine droppers and a notebook to keep track of meds – we had 3 different prescribed medications and alternated them Advil and Tylenol to manage her pain. Keeping track of when what was due was immensely helpful.

10. Prince Lionheart Wheely Bug – a super toy! Sara loved wheeling around on this – in her cast and in her brace. And so did several other hip children we have connected with.

11. On-The-Go Booster Seat – handy because your baby most likely will not fit in her high chair.

12. Spica Chair – a lot of people really recommend these chairs. Honestly, they didn’t work that well for us. Our surgeon wanted Sara to remain more reclined on the bean bag chair, and I just had a hard time getting Sara in and out of the spica chair. She always wanted to be on my lap anyhow. You can order a spica chair, or get instructions and build your own.

13. Car seat – you’re also going to need a wide car seat. Our hospital loaned us one to use. There are programs to help you afford one if you can’t get one from the hospital (Steps in the UK).

DDH Hip Brace – Week 2

Sara’s had her hip dysplasia (Lorenz) brace on for 10 days now. It is sooooo much better than the spica cast was, but it did come with its own set of challenges. The worst part for me has mostly been mental. Look at the brace! It’s Velcro. {That means it can come off.} I want so badly to take it off and let her walk again! BUT – if this brace means the difference between future surgery and no more surgery, we’ll leave it on. And we are. But it’s been a struggle.

If you’re facing a brace for DDH in the future – here’s what I’ve learned in the last 10 days:

  • It’s so much nicer to change a poopy diaper in that brace than in the spica! ;-) Yay for open access to the pooh! What a difference.
  • And YAY for cloth diapers! They fit again – that makes me happy.
  • The cast weighed a lot. She’s much lighter with the brace – that makes my back happy.
  • You’ll need something between the skin and the brace. The brace rubs on her skin when there’s no barrier. In Sara’s case, her baby legs are too short, so I’ve had to find leggings for her to wear under the brace. It’s nice to be able to put pants on her again.
  • As I said, the brace is mentally very hard. Even though