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PAOs and pregnancy July 3, 2014

Posted by hiphoperation in Post-op.
Tags: , ,

When I first found out that I was pregnant one of the first things I asked my midwife was whether my PAO surgery would affect my pregnancy or childbirth in any way. She wasn’t sure and marked me down as a ‘high risk’. I was told I should have an additional consultation with an obstetrician.

Then a few months later, I had a routine check up with the hip clinic at UCL hospital. I wasn’t able to have an x-ray this time around so just had a consultation with one of the registrars. He immediately put me at ease by explaining that my PAO surgery was done on my hip – not my pelvis – so wouldn’t affect my pregnancy in any way. He said that lots of women are concerned about how hip surgery may impact on pregnancy and seemed frustrated that neither my GP nor midwives had been able to reassure me.

He wrote a letter to my GP following my appointment which included the lines:

Of note, it is just to clarify that a periacetabular osteotomy does not affect child birth and there will be no problems with a normal vaginal delivery or a caesarean section. This procedure should not complicate the pregnancy.

With two weeks to go until my first baby is due, I am happy to report that my hip hasn’t given me any problems at all. I expected to at least have some aches and pains as I put on extra weight and my muscles loosened up, but I haven’t. I have had regular check ups with my midwife and didn’t need to see an obstetrician after all. So far, so good…

So apart from generally worrying about the pain of labour and how on earth I am going to take care of a baby, all I have to remember to do is ask the midwives to check my baby’s hips as soon as she’s born. If she is born with dodgy hips as well at least they can hopefully catch it straight away.




1. Donna Ashton - July 4, 2014

Hi, My name is Donna i am 35 years old, i live in Blackburn in Lancashire. I have just stumbled accross your diary while searching the net for pages,blogs and posts from other people who were born with hip dysplasia. Your story is almost identical to mine. My hip dysplasia was picked up when i was around 14 months old, i had surgery then to correct it. I was fine up until the age of 18 just after i had my first child. I started experiencing pain but i put it down to the strain of the pregnancy on my joints and thought it would get better in time. Shortly after my second child at the age of 20, the pain was getting unbearable at which point i decided to visit the GP. Eventually i was reffered to an orthopaedic surgeon who after looking at my x-rays explained that my hip joint had deteriorated dramatically and i would need PAO to reduce the pain and preserve my hip joint. I had my surgery at the age of 21, i experienced all of the things you did when you had your surgery and i have 2 very large screws through my hip and pelvis that have been left in there.

14 years on i can say that i had 12 years almost pain free and was able to lead a relatively normal life. I started getting pain again 2 years ago and have now been referred back to the consultant. I had an MRI scan 2 weeks ago and a cortisone injection in my hip joint. I am now awaiting a scan on my knee as i have been getting a lot of pain which can sometimes feel worse than my hip. Anyhow the consultant has given me a couple of options before considering a total hip replacement as i am still considered young for replacement surgery.

I just wanted to say that i went on to have 2 more children post PAO surgery and both times ended up having a cesarean section. The first time was due to my preganancy being only 12 months after the pao surgery and not wanting to damage the work that had been done and the second because after many examinations and sweeps at the hospital my babys head would not come down in to the position for giving birth. The consultant at the antenatal clinic thought that this was due to the surgery i had had on my hip and pelvis though i had been told years ago that the pao surgery would not affect my ability to have a natural birth. I had a planned cesearean 1 week after my due date, i did not go in to labour naturally. My youngest is now 22 months. I found that my hip was ok during the preganany just a bit achy towards the end when i was big. I have been told by my consultant that the hormones during pregnancy relax all the muscles, and the hip joint is not as painful. Since then it has got progressively worse and i know at some point in the near future i will need a total hip replacement.

I wish you luck for the birth of your baby and thank you for sharing your story. It is nice to hear other peoples stories and to be able to share my own story too.

Best wishes


2. Michelle Turnage - December 27, 2014

Hiya, I’ve just come across your blog and I must say it was great to read. I’m going into UCHL on the 6th Jan for my PAO (eek).
Thank you so much for this it has put my mind in some sort of ease before the big day and I’m sure the pain of the day will far out way the ongoing pain I’ve been suffering with.

Good luck with your new baby and thanks again
Michelle x

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