Suzanne is one of the most complicated cases of developmental dislocation of the hip (DDH) that we have come across since we first launched our orthopedic deformities project earlier this year. It is one that that will involve numerous surgeries.

Her family did not want her picture to be shown, nor an image of her leg. This is why we have uploaded a photo of the girl's hand.

Escaping Syria

Suzanne’s family fled from Syria, worried for their safety. Suzanne was born in Lebanon, far from the home she has never known. The one year old lives in a small apartment, where 13 members of her family live, crammed together. The summers in Lebanon are so hot that it’s hard to even breathe in the flat. “My brother is a doorman for the building,” the father explains. “So he gets a flat for free. We tried to rent somewhere else before but it fell through and so we’re living here for the meantime.”

Suzanne’s father has lived in Lebanon for years, from even before the war. He would come back to their home in Syria once every few weeks. When the war broke out he worried about his family’s safety. “Whenever I spoke to them on the phone I could hear the fear in my children’s voices,” he told us. “Simple things like diesel or bread became scarce because of all the fighting. At least I know that they are safe here in Lebanon.”

When Suzanne was born, her mother noticed that something was wrong with her legs. “We took her for an x-ray, where we were told that she had a problem,” her mother tells us. The hospital told them that they should speak to Dr Taha at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC). The family went to him, but were worried that they wouldn’t be able to afford the treatment.

At the hospital, Dr Taha diagnosed Suzanne with anterior bilateral DDH. This is a rare case of DDH, where the legs cannot close properly, and where the pelvic cavity is filled with unwanted tissue, which prevents the femur from resting in the pelvis properly.

In terms of treatment, however, Dr Taha said that she will need either a closed reduction or open reduction surgery – and can only find this out once in the operating theater.

Dr Taha recommended that the family contact INARA. We met with the family and informed them that we would be able to fund the treatment that Suzanne needs.

Relief for her family

Suzanne’s mother feels a lot better now that her daughter is getting the treatment she needs. “When I first found out that Suzanne had DDH I was very depressed. But knowing that it’s treatable has really helped. Meeting INARA and Dr Taha was such a blessing for us.”

It’s because of your donations that we are able to help children like Suzanne. Together with your help we can and do make a difference.

Suzanne's treatment was funded by UNICEF.