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News from Baby Medical Q&A, Issue #046
July 01, 2010

New Questions and Answers

Question:My 9 month old son will not put any weight on his left arm to crawl around, when just last week he was crawling everywhere. We went to the Dr. and got x-rays, all came back normal. But now six days later he still will not use it to crawl, and holds it close to his body. He will still reach out and grab and hold things with his arm. My wife and I are concerned, and wonder and being held back from developmental stages he should be experiencing, but can't because of not using his arm.

Answer: A short time not using an arm should not hinder your son's development. However, I would be expecting some improvement in movement over a week to 10 days or so and if he still isn't using the arm then, repeat x-rays may be necessary to see what is going on. There are some findings on x-ray that can take up to 10 days to show up.

I hope he is back crawling soon.


Question: My 5 month old grand daughter was born 6 weeks early. She is doing great, but has always had a strong tendency to hold her head to the left. This left leaning is becoming more marked and I am concerned about her.

Answer:Sometimes babies hold their heads to one side because the muscles in the neck are tight on one side (called torticollis) - usually physiotherapy is all that is needed. You should check with her doctor that this is the correct diagnosis.

There is information on torticollis on the plagiocephaly page and the recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics on what exercises help keep the neck supple.

If you do these exercises with your grand daughter, make sure they are gentle and you don't force them.


Question: My 7 month old son is spitting up light colored blood, he's got a cough and a little fever. What does that sound like?

Answer: A little bit of blood is probably just due to forceful coughing. If your son has been in contact with someone with TB (tuberculosis) though, you should see a doctor.

Please see the Cough page for information about cough.


Question: 3 months Tonight my 3 month old son has one of his nipples that is white as normal, while the other is red, and maybe slightly swollen

Answer: Your son may have an infection, especially if the overlying skin is warm to touch.

Please see the Breast Lump page for more information.


News and Updates

Iron supplements are good for Breath-Holding Attacks

You've probably read this already on the Breath-holding attacks page, but a new review confirms that even if you are not anemic, iron supplementation will significantly reduce breath-holding attacks.

Reference: Zehetner AA, Orr N, Buckmaster A, et al. Iron supplementation for breath-holding attacks in children. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010 May 12;5:CD008132.

Have you seen this website?

Buzzy Painless Shots - Buzzy is a newly developed reusable pain relief device that children can bring to the doctor's office with them to help dull the pain of shots! As the brainchild of Pediatrician Amy Baxter, Buzzy rapidly reduces pain when pressed onto the skin. Buzzy is especially helpful for children who receive shots often, like those suffering from Diabetes. Buzzy can also be used for the small things, like taking splinters out!

Not only is Buzzy a kid-favorite, but it‚s safe, effective immediately on contact, FDA compliant, and environmentally friendly too.


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