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Posts for category: Pediatric Health Care

By Village Pointe Pediatrics
October 02, 2017
Tags: Infant Jaundice  

Infant Baby SleepingJaundice is a common condition in newborns, caused by excess yellow pigment in the blood called bilirubin, which is produced by the normal breakdown of red blood cells. When bilirubin is produced faster than a newborn’s liver can break it down, the baby’s skin and eyes will appear yellow in color.

In most cases, jaundice disappears without treatment and does not harm the baby. However, if the infant’s bilirubin levels get too high, jaundice can pose a risk of brain damage. It is for this reason that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that all infants should be examined for jaundice within a few days of birth.

Is it Jaundice?

When parents leave the hospital with their newborn, they will want to look for signs of jaundice in the days following, as the condition usually appears around the second or third day of life. Most parents will be able to detect jaundice simply by looking at the baby’s skin under natural daylight. If you notice your newborn’s skin or eyes looking yellow, you should contact your pediatrician to see if jaundice is present.

Also, call your pediatrician immediately if your jaundiced newborn’s condition intensifies or spreads. The following symptoms may be warning signs of dangerously high levels of bilirubin that require prompt treatment.

  • Skin appears very yellow
  • Infant becomes hard to wake or fussy
  • Poor feeding
  • Abnormal behavior
  • Feverish

Treating Jaundice

While most infants with jaundice do not require treatment, in more moderate to severe cases treatment will be recommended. Some infants can be treated by phototherapy, a special light treatment that exposes the baby’s skin to get rid of the excess bilirubin. Infants who do not respond to phototherapy or who continue to have rising bilirubin levels may be treated with a blood transfusion.

Always talk to your pediatrician if you have questions about newborn jaundice. 

By Village Pointe Pediatrics
August 01, 2017
Tags: Fever   Sick Child  

FeverGenerally, a fever is brought on by an infection from a virus or bacterial infection. While many times a parent’s first instinct is to worry when their child has a fever, it’s not necessarily a sign that something serious is taking place. That’s because a fever is the body’s normal, infection-fighting response to infection and in many cases is considered a good sign that the child’s body is trying to heal itself.

When to Visit Your Pediatrician

Fevers are one of the most common reasons parents seek medical care for their child. Most of the time, however, fevers require no treatment.

When a child has a fever, he may feel warm, appear flushed or sweat more than normal—these are all common signs. So, when does a child’s fever warrant a pediatrician’s attention?

You should call your pediatrician immediately if the child has a fever and one or more of the following:

  • Exhibits very ill, lethargic, unresponsive or unusually fussy behavior
  • Complains of a stiff neck, severe headache, sore throat, ear pain, unexplained rash, painful urination, difficulty breathing or frequent bouts of vomiting or diarrhea
  • Has a seizure
  • Is younger than 3 months and has a temperature of 100.4°F or higher
  • Fever repeatedly rises above 104°F for a child of any age
  • Child still feels ill after fever goes away
  • Fever persists for more than 24 hours in a child younger than 2 years or more than 3 days in a child 2 years of age and older

All children react differently to fevers. If your child appears uncomfortable, you can keep him relaxed with a fever-reducing medication until the fever subsides. Ask your pediatrician if you have questions about recommended dosage. Your child should also rest and drink plenty of fluid to stay hydrated. Popsicles are great options that kids can enjoy!

For many parents, fevers can be scary, particularly in infants. Remember, the fever itself is just the body’s natural response to an illness, and letting it run its course is typically the best way for the child to fight off the infection. Combined with a little TLC and a watchful eye, your child should be feeling normal and fever-free in no time.

Whenever you have a question or concern about your child’s health and well being, contact your Omaha pediatrician for further instruction.

By Village Pointe Pediatrics
February 02, 2017
Tags: Tonsillitis  

TonsilitisThe tonsils are oval-shaped, pink masses of tissue on both sides of the throat. They are part of the body's immune system, designed to fight off bacteria and viruses that try to enter the body through the mouth. Sometimes common illnesses are too much for the tonsils to handle, and the tonsils become infected themselves. This condition is known as tonsillitis, an inflammation of the tonsils that can cause a sore throat and discomfort for your little one.

Tonsillitis is common in children, but it can occur at all ages. Many cases of tonsillitis in elementary-aged kids are caused by a viral infection, such as the common cold or flu. Bacterial infections, particularly streptococcus (strep), can also cause an infection of the tonsils.

If your child has tonsillitis, his or her main symptom will be a sore throat. It may be painful to eat, drink or swallow. Other common signs of infected tonsils include:

  • Red, tender and enlarged tonsils
  • Yellow or white coating on tonsils
  • Swollen, painful lymph nodes in the neck
  • Fever
  • Bad Breath

If your child’s symptoms suggest tonsillitis, call your pediatrician. Your child will need to visit a pediatrician to determine whether it is a bacterial or viral infection, which can usually be diagnosed with a physical exam and a throat culture.

If bacteria caused the child’s tonsillitis, then antibiotics may be prescribed to kill the infection. If a virus causes it, then the body will fight the infection on its own. Rest and drinking fluids can also help alleviate symptoms and ease pain. In some cases, if the child suffers from frequent episodes of tonsillitis or repeat infections over several years, your pediatrician may recommend a tonsillectomy, a common surgical procedure to remove the tonsils.

Because tonsillitis is contagious, kids should help protect others at school and home by washing hands frequently, not sharing cups or other personal utensils, and covering their mouth when coughing or sneezing.

Always contact your pediatrician when you have questions about your child’s symptoms and health.