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Health Library A to Z

P

  • Acne in Children
  • Acne is a disorder of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands. Hair follicles are the areas around the base or root of each hair. Sebaceous glands are the tiny glands that release oil (sebum) into the hair follicles. The sebum moistens the skin and hair. The sebum and hair get to the skin surface through tiny holes called pores.

  • Apnea of Prematurity
  • It’s a cliché that many new parents need to reassure themselves that the baby is still breathing. But what if your baby really is having breathing problems? A breathing condition called apnea of prematurity affects some babies, especially if they’re born early. But you can learn what symptoms to look for.

  • Blood Types in Pregnancy
  • A baby may have the blood type and Rh factor of either parent, or a combination of both parents.

  • Care of the Uncircumcised Penis in Teens
  • In an uncircumcised boy, the foreskin will begin to separate from the glans, or the tip of the penis. This happens naturally while the male is an infant. This is called foreskin retraction.

  • Conjunctivitis in Children
  • Conjunctivitis or pink eye is an irritation of the conjunctiva of the eye. The conjunctiva is the membrane that lines the inside of the eyelids. It also covers the actual eye.

  • Dialysis
  • Detailed information on dialysis, including peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis

  • Henoch-Schönlein Purpura (HSP)
  • Henoch-Schonlein purpura (HSP) is a form of vasculitis. Vasculitis is a condition that involves inflammation of the blood vessels.

  • Infant Play
  • Hang brightly colored objects near your newborn. Sing and talk to your baby. Rock your baby, and take him or her for walks.

  • Pain Control
  • If your child has moderate to severe pain, he or she may receive narcotics during and after surgery. If your child is in the ICU after surgery, he or she may receive sedatives along with pain medications.

  • Pain Management and Children
  • When a child has cancer or another pain-causing disease, one of his or her greatest fears is pain. Every effort should be made to ease the pain during the treatment process.

  • Pap Test for Adolescents
  • A Pap test, along with a pelvic examination, is an important part of a female's routine health care because it may detect abnormalities that can lead to invasive cancer.

  • Parents: Check Toys for Lead
  • If you have toys that have been recalled, don’t throw them out. Take them back to the store where they came from.

  • Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA)
  • Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is a heart defect found in the days or weeks after birth. The ductus arteriosus is a normal part of fetal blood circulation. All babies are born with this opening between the aorta and the pulmonary artery. But it usually closes on its own shortly after birth. If it stays open, it is called patent ductus arteriosus.

  • Peanut Allergy Diet for Children
  • Ethnic foods, commercially prepared baked goods, and candy can be cross-contaminated with peanuts, because peanuts are frequently used in these types of foods.

  • Pedestrian Safety
  • Children are at higher risk for pedestrian injury and death because they often don't understand traffic rules or the danger that vehicles pose. In addition, parents and caregivers often overestimate a child's traffic skills.

  • Pediatric Arthritis and Other Rheumatic Diseases
  • Arthritis is a group of more than 100 diseases. It’s only one category of rheumatic diseases. Rheumatic diseases can cause pain, stiffness, and swelling in the joints, and bones. Rheumatic diseases can also affect other areas of the body, including organs. Some rheumatic diseases affect connective tissues.

  • Pediatric Blood Disorders
  • Detailed information on blood disorders, including Anemia, Aplastic Anemia, Hemolytic Anemia, Iron Deficiency Anemia, Megaloblastic Anemia, Sickle Cell Anemia, Thalassemia, Alpha Thalassemia, Beta Thalassemia (Cooley's Anemia)

  • Pericarditis in Children
  • Pericarditis is inflammation or infection of the pericardium. In children, pericarditis is most likely to happen after surgery to repair heart defects.

  • Periventricular Leukomalacia (PVL)
  • The head is one of the most fragile parts on your baby, especially after birth. Sometimes, damage can occur, particularly if your baby is born prematurely. One type of brain damage is called periventricular leukomalacia. Read on to better understand what this diagnosis means for you and your baby, and what doctors can do to help.

  • Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension
  • In this condition, a newborn's circulation changes back to the circulation of a fetus, where much of the blood flow bypasses the lungs.

  • Pharyngitis and Tonsillitis in Children
  • Pharyngitis is redness, pain, and swelling of the throat (pharynx). Tonsillitis is inflammation of the tonsils. The tonsils are a pair of tissue masses on either side of the back of the throat. They are part of the immune system, the part of the body that fights infection and other disease.

  • Pheochromocytoma in Children
  • Pheochromocytoma is a tumor of the adrenal glands. The tumor makes hormones called epinephrine and norepinephrine. This leads to an excess of the hormones in the body. These hormones help manage heart rate and blood pressure, and they have other tasks. Too much of these hormones in the body causes problems.

  • Phobias in Children and Adolescents
  • Common phobias include fear of animals, blood, heights, closed spaces, or flying. In teens, the fear must last at least six months to be considered a phobia.

  • Physical Needs of the Dying Child
  • A terminally ill child has many of the same needs as any seriously ill child, including a routine for sleep and rest, and for pain management.

  • Pilomatrixoma in Children
  • A pilomatrixoma (PEE-lo-may-trick-SO-mah) is a slow-growing, hard lump found under the skin. It is most common on the face and neck, but it may be on other parts of the body. A pilomatrixoma is usually a single lump, but occasionally, there may be more than one.

  • Pityriasis Rosea in Children
  • Pityriasis rosea (pit-uh-RI-uh-sis RO-zee-uh) is a mild, common rash. It causes the skin to become scaly, pink, and inflamed. The rash can last from 1 to 3 months and usually leaves no lasting marks. This rash is not contagious.

  • Planning to Be Away from Your Baby: Introducing a Bottle
  • You’ve been breastfeeding your baby up until now—but it’s time to return to work. You haven’t given her a bottle with breast milk yet. When should you make the change? Here are tips to make a successful transition from breast to bottle.

  • Play
  • Detailed information on the stages of play for all ages

  • Play It Cool in the Hot Tub
  • What's more relaxing that a good soak in a hot tub? Hot water sure makes you feel great, but hot tubs and whirlpools can sometimes be dangerous -- and even deadly.

  • Play Therapy
  • Play therapy is used to help children understand and cope with illness, surgery, hospitalization, treatments, and procedures.

  • Pneumococcus
  • Pneumococcus bacteria can cause serious illness in children, including pneumonia, infection in the blood, and meningitis.

  • Pneumonia in Children
  • Detailed information on pneumonia, including different types, diagnosis, and treatment

  • Pneumothorax
  • Pneumothorax is a lung disorder in which air in the lungs leaks out through holes in the lung tissue into the spaces outside the lung airways.

  • Poison Ivy Rash in Children
  • Poison ivy rash is an allergic reaction to poison ivy. Poison ivy is very common plant in the U.S. It is similar to two other plants called poison oak and poison sumac. The plants cause allergic dermatitis.

  • Poisons and Children
  • Detailed information on poisoning, preventing poisoning and how to respond in an emergency

  • Polio (IPV)
  • The poliovirus destroys the nervous system, causing paralysis. Today, polio is extremely rare in the United States because of the polio vaccine. It's still common in other countries, though, so children still need to be immunized.

  • Pollen and Children
  • Detailed information on pollen allergy, also called hay fever, including information on which plants produce the most pollen and allergic rhinitis prevention during pollen season

  • Polycystic Kidney Disease
  • Detailed information on the different types of polycystic kidney disease, including autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease, and acquired cystic kidney disease

  • Polycythemia Vera in Children
  • Polycythemia vera is a serious, but very rare blood disorder in children. With polycythemia vera, the bone marrow makes too many red blood cells. The extra cells make the blood too thick. This may lead to blood clots. The clots can decrease the blood supply to organs, tissues, and cells.

  • Posterior Urethral Valves
  • Detailed information on posterior urethral valves, including causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment

  • Postmaturity
  • The most common symptoms of postmaturity in a baby are dry, peeling skin; overgrown nails; and abundant scalp hair.

  • Precocious Puberty
  • Puberty that happens early is called precocious puberty. This means a child's physical signs of sexual maturity develop too soon. This includes breast growth, pubic hair, and voice changes. These are known as secondary sexual characteristics. Precocious puberty happens before age 8 in girls, and before age 9 in boys.

  • Prematurity
  • Other terms often used for prematurity are preterm and "preemie." Many premature babies also weigh less than 5.5 pounds and may be referred to as low birthweight.

  • Preparing the Infant for Surgery
  • It's important to keep your baby's routine the same before the day of surgery. Make sure you, your baby, and your family are well rested.

  • Preschool Play
  • A preschooler needs space in which to run and explore. Take him or her on trips to the playground, park, or beach. Encourage him or her to play with other children.

  • Preschooler Nutrition
  • Preschool children are still developing their eating habits and need encouragement to eat healthy meals and snacks.

  • Prevent Shaken Baby Syndrome
  • While being a new Mom brings lots of joy, it also brings stress—something a crying baby can make worse. Better understanding why your baby cries can help you deal with this stress in a healthy way and help you avoid the most common form of child abuse: Shaken baby syndrome.

  • Preventing Falls
  • Falls are the most common cause of injury visits to the emergency room for young children. Falls cause more open wounds, fractures, and brain injuries than any other cause.

  • Preventing Injuries--How You Can Help Your Child
  • You can help your child by being prepared and preventing injuries from occurring. It is important to take charge of your child's health and follow a program designed to help you and your family stay healthy and safe.

  • Prevention of Heart Disease Starts in Childhood
  • You may think of heart disease as a problem for adults, not your young children. But diet and exercise habits started in childhood can begin a lifetime of heart health, or a lifetime of heart damage.

  • Problems in Puberty
  • Detailed information on problems in puberty, including precocious puberty, gonadotropin-independent precocious puberty, and delayed puberty

  • Protect Kids From Lead Poisoning
  • Although lead poisoning is often associated with the paint of older homes, children may be exposed to lead if the soldering on water pipes is new. In fact, lead may be found in many parts of a home, including soil, food or even the air.

  • Prune Belly Syndrome
  • Detailed information on prune belly syndrome, including causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment

  • Psoriatic Arthritis in Children
  • Psoriatic arthritis is a form of arthritis associated with psoriasis. Psoriasis is a chronic skin and nail disease. It causes red, scaly rashes and thick, pitted fingernails. Psoriatic arthritis is similar to rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in symptoms and joint inflammation.

  • Psychiatric Treatment Team
  • Team members may include a child and adolescent psychiatrist, a psychologist, a social worker, and a psychiatric nurse.

  • Puberty: Adolescent Female
  • Girls experience puberty as a sequence of events, and their pubertal changes usually begin before boys of the same age. The first pubertal change in girls usually is breast development.

  • Puberty: Adolescent Male
  • During puberty, a teenage boy will grow taller and heavier, and hormones will lead to sexual maturity.

  • Pulmonary Atresia
  • Pulmonary atresia (PA) is a heart defect. It happens when the fetal heart doesn’t form as it should. This can happen during the first 8 weeks of pregnancy.

  • Pulmonary Stenosis in Children
  • Pulmonary stenosis is a birth defect of the heart (congenital). It can happen when the pulmonary valve doesn’t develop as it should during the first 8 weeks of pregnancy. The pulmonary valve connects the right ventricle to the pulmonary artery.

  • Puncture Wounds
  • A puncture wound is a deep wound made by a sharp object. This type of wound may become infected easily because dirt and germs are carried deep into the tissues.

  • Put Peer Pressure in Its Place
  • Peer pressure can get the best of children and push them to do things that they don't really want to do. Parents can counter it, if they're ready to help.

  • Pyloric Stenosis
  • Pyloric stenosis is a problem that affects babies between 2 and 8 weeks of age and causes forceful vomiting that can lead to dehydration.

  • Special Care
  • Premature babies especially need a supportive environment to help them continue to mature and develop as they would in their mother's womb.

  • Stages of Play
  • Children go through distinct stages of play as they grow. Each stage is critically important to the development of the next.

  • Thumb Sucking
  • Thumb sucking is normal in infants and young children. It shouldn't cause any permanent problems if your child stops by age 5.

  • Toddler Play
  • Ideas for toddler toys: a rocking horse, a shovel and a bucket, and toys that can be pushed or pulled.