Saturday, July 25, 2009

Doing the Math

I've had some bad cast moments lately, so I decided to do the math to reassure myself. Numbers sometimes make me feel better, so here goes...

Olivia was born April 10, 2009 (we will consider this Day Zero).

Day 1: Pediatrician notices that her left hip is out of the socket... possibly the right too.
Day 2: Pediatrician again checks her hips and feels that the right is also out of the socket.
Day 4: We have an ultrasound done of Olivia's hips
Day 5: We meet Dr. Bowen at DuPont who confirms that Olivia has developmental dysplasia of the hip. She is fitted for a Pavlick Harness
Day 55: Dr. Bowen tells us the harness isn't working and she will need surgery. We get to take the harness off until then. We are harness-free for 5 days.
Day 59: Open-reduction surgery, tendotomy, and spica cast -- we spend the night at DuPont
Day 94: Olivia gets her second cast which ends just above her knees.
Day 98: Olivia is moved to her bedroom and is now sleeping in her crib.

Next Dr.'s appointment is August 11th or Day 122... he may determine that the cast can come off then or we may need to go back. We've tentatively scheduled the appointment after that for August 20th or Day 131. Hopefully the cast will definitely be off then. At that point, she will have had the cast for just 72 days. If we add the time spent in the harness to this, it's a total of 122 days. Essentially, if the spica cast is not removed until August 20th, she will only have had 9 days of life where her legs were not in some sort of contraption [full-time].

Percentage-wise, that is 93% of her life spent in the harness and cast. It's easy to look at that and be distressed. HOWEVER, if she lives to be 80 years old or roughly 29,220 days, the percentage of her life spent in a medically-necessary contraption is only 0.4%. In fact, by that point in her life, she won't even remember the stories we've told her.

All the worried energy that we've spent on this, and it only works out to be roughly 0.4% of Olivia's life. That's much better.


  1. What a great way to get perspective! The math teacher in me is smiling :)

    Hang in there!

  2. I heart you. Thanks for the comment and the email. xoxo


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