This is Harrison Greene – Our Introduction to Arthrogryposis

Harrison Greene, named after a family ancestor, born on what would have been his great-grandfather’s 99th birthday, and ensuring he broke the mold of any and every preconceived notion placed on him prior to his birth.

A breech baby, born at 37.5 weeks via c-section, little man for sure didn’t come into the world on the easiest or best of terms.

  • A left-arm that was tucked up behind his head, with his umbilical cord wrapped around it. The arm’s position proved to save his life, keeping the cord from being able to wrap around his neck, but the position caused his arm to be fractured during birth and having a lack of muscle development in his left shoulder.
  • Arthrogryposis in all his extremities
  • Scoliosis
  • Internally rotated shoulders
  • a narrow ribcage
  • dislocated hip
  • infant torticollis
  • and a club foot.

All unexpected.

Baby boy was a bit of a pretzel, and we had no clue prior to birth.

What we do know

So, up to this point, this is what we know:

My wife’s doctor, because of my wife having some hypertension and our son being breech, decided at her last appointment to go ahead with the planned c-section 10 days earlier than scheduled.

The aforementioned hypertension and breach are really the only issues that were experienced throughout the entire pregnancy.

All indications of a healthy baby boy were there. Great heartbeat, breathing, and all limbs, and his head measured normal. The typical signs of arthrogryposis (AMC); lack of movement in the womb, and low amniotic fluid, were not there. Nothing abnormal came up on blood genetic testing during pregnancy or on the ultrasounds.

No one had any idea or any clue until he was born.

We’re learning as much as we can, as quick as we can. Our son may not have come out how we expected, but he’s our son, and this is our journey.

What is Arthrogryposis?

So what is Arthrogryposis? Well frankly, we’re still learning that, but from John Hopkins Medicine:

Arthrogryposis, also called arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC), is a term used to describe a variety of conditions involving multiple joint contractures (or stiffness). A contracture is a condition where the range of motion of a joint is limited. It may be unable to fully or partially extend or bend.

The word arthrogryposis, when broken up in Latin, literally means “Curved Joint Disease”

Arthro – Joints
Gryp – Curved
Osis – Diseased or Abnormal Condition.

Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita breaks down as:

Arthrogryposis – Curved Joint Disease
Multiplex – Multiple Parts
Congenita – Evident at Birth

Arthrogryposis is a broad spectrum of conditions, with over 300 specific diagnoses that fall under its definition. It is a rare disorder, occurring in 1 in 3000 live births.

So that pretty much sums up our little guy. His arms/hands and legs/feet both appear to be affected by this condition. We’re still figuring this all out, and as I type this, we don’t know where the future is taking us.

 

 

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