Hip Spica – Operation Day is here!

Hip Spica – Operation Day is here!

Hip Spica Day Zero

So the day finally arrived, Harper had her hip spica surgery this morning.  Harper’s procedure is called a closed reduction which is where they manipulate her hips back into place and then apply a plaster cast known as a hip spica.

infant nil by mouth but smiling sitting in hospital cot bed waiting her operation

the first checks

Harper arrived early this morning at 7:45 (10 minutes late – oops).  Having been nil by mouth since last night she was surprisingly chirpy and was very happy to oblige having her checks done.  The nurses checked Harper’s weight, oxygen saturation levels and pulse.  Next came the questions about any allergies, metal work, did she have a temperature etc. In fact I was asked these questions about 8 times over the course of the morning as the each member of hospital staff has to double-check. We brought an old t-shirt with us for her to wear in surgery but they gave us a gown to wear instead.  Harper rocked her gown whilst throwing her rainbow shoes around!

infant in surgical gown waiting her hip spica operation

The anaesthetist

At 9am we were called through to the anaesthetist.  I’d been feeling fine right up until this point.  As soon as I was asked to don a blue robe and change my shoes I started to feel a little bit worried.  Although this feeling was soon dismissed with the overwhelming feeling of shock that I had to wear a pair of crocs.  I hadn’t planned on looking fashionable but I had swore I’d never let a pair on my feet ever.

Fashion faux pas aside I then had to bear hug Harper whilst the anaesthetist held a gas mask against her face.  Harper was pretty calm throughout. I then felt her struggle a little bit against it before quickly slumping to rest asleep.  At this point I had to leave as they would put her cannula in and put her under full general anaesthetic.  Not something that I would have wanted to witness anyway!

The wait

This may sound odd but I rather enjoyed the first hour of waiting for Harper to come out of surgery.  I went and got Costa and a bite to eat and I did some reading.  All of these are things I don’t get to do during the daytime anymore, so it was quite nice to have some ‘me time’.  Then the second hour came and I started to feel a bit nervous.  I had butterflies looping in my stomach and the clock didn’t seem to be going quick enough. The more time went on the more I started to panic.  I thought what if she’s allergic to the plaster cast or worse the general anaesthetic. 2 hours after Harper went into surgery and about 10 minutes into my soul-destroying thoughts the nurse popped her head round to tell me I could go and collect Harper from theatre.

the reunion!

I could see Harper on her hospital trolley bed and she was quite content – that was until she saw me.  After spotting me across the room Harper burst into a hangry (hungry/angry) meltdown.  To be honest I don’t blame her if I’d gone that long without food I’d be hangry too!  We got back to her room and she quickly calmed down as she was breastfed.  Breastfeeding Harper also gave the perfect opportunity for the nurses to do her observations as she was so settled and content.  Once she had kept her milk down we moved onto blueberry rice cakes, (yum).  I loved her new pink cast and thanked the surgeons for putting a not using plain coloured plaster!

1 year old infant shortly after closed reduction and hip spica application. eating a rice cake and wearing a pink hip spica from armpits down to both ankles
From this point on Harper was a gold star patient.  She was frustrated that she cannot sit up or crawl, but hopefully she’ll come to terms with that soon.

I had a nurse come in and talk though Spica cast changing Harper first, followed by Physio. Physio talked through and double checked I knew all the equipment I’d need to care for her in a spica.  Physio also checked that I had a suitable specialist car seat  that my husband and I would be able to transport her home safely in. After this point they said we could go home!

1 year old infant having sleek applied to her hip spica in hospital
So at 3pm I messaged my husband and he set off on his way to collect us.  Harper had decided to have a quick nap at at this point, this gave me time to get all my bags re packed and sorted before leaving hospital.

home time

Finally home at 5pm, just in time for dinner.  Harper had a chill out on her beanbag which she seems super comfy on.  You may also notice that I’ve started modifying her cast slightly with patterned duck tape.  Unfortunately I ran out of it.  I’m ordering some more to do more decorations.

1 year old infant happy smiling smitting on yellow bean bag on day of hip spica operation. pink hip spica
It’s bed times here now.  I’ve just got all my fingers crossed that her sleep goes a smoothly as the rest of the operation day did.  I’m extremely worried Harper will be up every hour!  Tomorrow I’ll be updating our first night in hip spica goes! 

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  1. Becky
    February 6, 2017 / 9:14 pm

    Glad the op went well and that Harper doesn’t seem unduly upset by the whole thing! Fascinating reading for me as I had a hip spica for dysplasia at Harper’s age. Don’t think child seats or even seat belts in the back were invented then so it’s got me wondering how my parents transported me in the car! Hope you both get a good nights sleep! x

    • February 6, 2017 / 9:21 pm

      It’s brilliant to hear from an adult who’s had it done and now has healthy hips! I imagine they would have sat you on their lap or laid you down on the back car seat!

  2. February 6, 2017 / 10:01 pm

    I’m glad it went better than you thought – fingers crossed for a good night too! She looks quite happy, bless her 🙂

  3. Tina wenham
    February 6, 2017 / 10:48 pm

    So pleased went well hopefully she will sleep ok because of anisthetic
    Looking forward to hearing tomorrow xx

  4. Debbie
    February 6, 2017 / 11:17 pm

    I’m so glad all went well today with Harpers operation, and she didn’t get too stressed out. She’s definitely a trooper Nikki sending you all our love your way😘😘

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