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Top100 Diseases

 pediatric diseases

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Premature birth
A neonate born before gestational age of 37 weeks is ”preterm,” or ”premature.” Five percent of pregnancies end in spontaneous preterm delivery, and 70% of all perinatal deaths occur in preterm infants, especially if they are growth retarded. The cause of premature birth is often unknown, but there are a number of risk factors.

What to learn
  • Etiology and risk factors for preterm delivery.
  • Complications and morbidity associated with preterm and low birth-weight infants.
  • Management of the preterm neonate - both before and after delivery.

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Bronchiolitis is a very common cause of pediatric admissions. During the winter, ”bronchiolitis season” patients can fill all the beds on the ward. It is caused by the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and is most serious in infants and young children up to 3 years of age. Children who have bronchiolitis present with fever, respiratory distress, and a secondary failure to feed. Treatment is supportive with oxygen and nasogastric or intravenous hydration if necessary.

What to learn
  • Etiology and epidemiology of RSV infection.
  • Symptoms, signs, and diagnosis of bronchiolitis.
  • Management of bronchiolitis.

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Acute laryngotracheobronchitis, also known as –“croup”, is a common and potentially dangerous complication of upper respiratory tract infection in children, especially those under 3 years of age. The most common cause is parainfluenza virus infection. Inflammatory edema of the vocal cords and epiglottis causes narrowing of the airway, which produces the characteristic cough and stridor.

What to learn
  • Etiology and epidemiology of croup.
  • Symptoms, signs and differential diagnosis.
  • Acute management of croup.

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Cerebral palsy
This term describes disorders apparent at birth or in childhood that are a result of brain injury in the neonatal period. This injury results in a nonprogressive neurological deficit. The precise cause can be difficult to determine, but common factors include hypoxia in utero or during birth, trauma, prolonged convulsions or coma, kernicterus, and cerebral hemorrhage or infarction.

What to learn
  • Etiology and risk factors for cerebral palsy.
  • Classification of cerebral palsy and clinical features.
  • Ensure that you can recognize and correctly name the gait disorders, which are common in clinical exams.

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Failure to thrive
This is a common presentation with primary care and pediatric outpatients. A child's weight, height, or head circumference persistently falls below the expected percentiles when plotted against the standard growth curves. There are numerous causes; however, 95% of cases are due to insufficient or problematic feeding. Other causes include chronic infection and gastrointestinal or metabolic disease. Many cases are simply due to idiosyncratic growth pattern or parents of short stature.

What to learn
  • Etiology and risk factors; a differential diagnosis for failure to thrive.
  • The diagnostic tests that can be employed.
  • Strategies for management of failure to thrive.

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Child abuse
Sadly, this is a common problem and a difficult one to tackle as a clinician. It is important to recognize the signs of child abuse and to know the correct way to proceed if you suspect it.

What to learn
  • Risk factors for child abuse.
  • Recognizing signs of child abuse.
  • The multidisciplinary approach to child abuse.
  • Protocols for dealing with a suspected case: as a junior doctor this invariably starts with calling your registrar or consultant; don't try to handle it on your own.

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