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News from Baby Medical Q&A, Issue #047
August 01, 2010

New Questions and Answers

Question: The baby is 4 weeks old and is male. He was spitting up every other bottle he was given, fussy, not sleeping well, and not gaining weight. He was given Zantac by his pediatrician. He now has a collapsed left lung, an enlarged heart and enlarged liver. What could cause this to happen in an infant? And could the enlarged heart cause his lung to collapse?

To the best of my knowledge there are no pre-existing family medical conditions and no chronic conditions.

Answer: It sounds as if you baby may have heart failure. This is usually due to some structural abnormalities in the heart, like a hole in the heart. From what you say, I would think your baby needs an Echocardiogram and an EKG.

The Zantac has not caused the problem. It is likely that the heart failure was causing the initial feeding problems.

All the best.

Question: I have a 9 month son who recently developed a red patch on each side of his cheeks. The patches are round, warm to the touch and feels like a lump. There is no fever and does not appear to itch. Concerned what it is...please help!

Answer:The most likely cause of a red, dry rash that is warm to touch on both cheeks would be eczema - click here.

If you son has had a fever, then there is an infection, parvovirus, that can give a slapped cheek appearance - click here. This will settle by itself.

Infections, like cellulitis, can cause hot red areas on the skin, but it would be unusual for both cheeks to be involved, so I don't think you need to worry about that.

Use moisturiser on the skin and if it doesn't settle, see your doctor.

Question: I just found out my 9 month baby boys testicles didn't drop yet. I'm very worried as i never heard of this before. Thank you.

Answer: Some babies don't drop their testicles until about 9 months of age, but if they're not down by 12 months, a paediatric surgeon will usually do a small operation to bring them down. I would ask you doctor for a referral to a paediatric surgeon now so that by the time you see one, it won't be too late.

If the testicles remain high so you can't feel them beyond a year of age, there is an increased risk of later malignancy and infertility, so it is important to get him reviewed.

Question: One of My 8 month old twins constantly scratches at his tummy. It is starting to interfere with his sleep at night. There are no visible signs of a skin rash. He does have a little cherry mole on his side he has had since he was 3 months old. What is causing this and how can I help ease his discomfort?

Answer: The cherry mole is what we often call a strawberry nevus - Click here for more information on this.

If the skin is itchy, I would moisturise your baby's skin at night.

News and Updates

Zinc supplementation in Gastroenteritis

zinc supplementation has been a useful treatment in gastroenteritis in the developing world. A study in Poland has shown, though, that if there is no underlying zinc deficiency (like in most developed countries) there is no benefit from zinc supplementation in gastroenteritis. So in the developed world, attention to maintaining hydration is the key treatment.

Reference: Bernadeta Patro, Henryk SzymaƄski and Hania Szajewska. Oral Zinc for the Treatment of Acute Gastroenteritis in Polish Children: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial, J Pediatr. 2010 Jul 14.

Have you seen this website?

Growing Happy Kids - Maureen Healy has a great attitude and has lots of positive advice to help parents - sign up for her ezine or buy her excellent book - "365 Perfect Things to Say to your Kids". She believes in the importance of empowering children and helping them reach their full potential.

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