Toddler Learns To Walk Thanks To 'Concrete Trousers'

A toddler was able to walk for the first time thanks to 'concrete trousers'.

Harrison Hobson was born with a condition called dysplasia, which caused his right hip joint to constantly dislocate.

For his first six months, Harrison was strapped into a special harness. But as he grew up, he had to wear an unusual double leg cast that looked like concrete trousers.

At the age of 14 months, the casts were removed and Harrison was able to take his first steps.

Now aged two, he is running around like any other toddler.

Recalling Harrison's diagnosis, his mum Charlotte Hobson, 33, from Bristol, said: "Just before we were due to go home from the hospital, a doctor wiggled his hips around and told me that they were both dislocated.

"My husband Jason is a professional rugby player and has seen a fair few injuries in his time so I thought it would be just a case of clicking them back in.

"But then they explained to me about hip dysplasia - it was a horrible sinking feeling. You could feel his hip click in and out."

Charlotte said that it was hard to imagine the cast before it was on her baby.

She said: "I just had all these questions about whether he was going to be in pain, whether I'd be able to keep him clean and tidy. Would I even be able to find him clothes big enough to fit over the cast?

"It was such an unusual cast and it doesn't look comfortable at all so it was heart-breaking to know that my son had to be stuck like that for so long.

"It's not a natural position and as a mum you just don't want your baby to be in pain.

"The harness he was in for his first three months fixed him a pose like he was sitting on a saddle.

"And then the cast was like a pair of concrete trousers. They were so big and bulky and I was worried people would laugh at him.

"But with all the help from the dysplasia charity Steps we managed to deal with the 'concrete trousers' situation and people were only sympathetic when we explained what was wrong.

"Once he finally got out of his cast it was such a feeling of relief. Now you'd never know that he'd ever had a problem.

Tim McLachlan, CEO of Steps said: "Steps receives calls from parents across the UK who are upset at being asked by strangers 'how did you manage to break both their legs?' referring to their toddler who is in a hip spica cast from waist to ankles.

"Hip dysplasia is a common condition, but not common knowledge and we need to change this.

"Developmental dysplasia of the hip affects one to three per cent of all births in the UK regardless of background - that's up to 24,000 children per year or an entire class in an every average secondary school.

"It's more than the number of new diagnoses of leukaemia and skin cancer combined."