• 20 MAY 14

    Gastroesophageal Reflux

    Gastroesophageal reflux occurs when the contents of the stomach, including stomach acid, move upward (reflux) into the esophagus (swallowing tube). In infants, reflux is a fairly common problem (spitting up) that usually clears up with time. Gastroesophageal reflux becomes a disease (GERD) when it occurs enough to cause heartburn pain, respiratory symptoms, and other problems.

    In babies, you may see milk or formula coming out of the mouth. Infants may be fussy, cry, arch their back, or refuse feedings. There may be slow weight gain. Symptoms occur commonly after meals. Older children may complain of a sour taste in their mouths, cough or clear their throats, or have a hoarse voice. Reflux may make asthma worse. Long-term problems that occur in adults such as esophagus damage are rare in children.

    It can be difficult to diagnose reflux in children. Symptom history is most important. Tests such as X-rays (Upper GI Series), pH probe, and Endoscopy (flexible camera used to look down esophagus) are occasionally helpful. Usually a course of antacid medications is recommended. It is also helpful is to thicken feedings with rice cereal and elevate the head of the bed slightly.

    Call our office if you think your child has symptoms of GERD, especially if your child has frequent vomiting, vomiting with weight loss, painful swallowing, difficulty swallowing, heartburn, chest or stomach pain, choking, gagging, or apnea (temporary interruptions of breathing).

Health Topics

  • Colic

    Newborns with colic have long-lasting periods of crying and fussing. The cause of colic is unknown but is probably related to the baby’s temperament. It occurs in infants from birth to age 3 months.

  • Croup

    A croupy cough is a tight barking (like a seal) sounding cough. The voice or cry is hoarse usually and sometimes there is a fever and congestion. If you think your child has croup, they should be seen in the office.

  • Diaper Rash

    A baby’s sensitive skin is easily irritated by urine and stool. To prevent this irritation, you can apply a barrier cream like Desitin with each diaper change.

  • Eczema

    Eczema is a chronic, red, itchy skin disorder that is very common, affecting 10% of children. It is often seen in children who have allergies. The skin is usually dry and may also become thickened with time.

  • Insect Bites

    If the insect bites are itchy and swollen, it’s okay to apply hydrocortisone cream 1% (Cortaid or other brand) twice a day as needed for 5-7 days.

  • Immunization Reaction

    Common side effects following vaccination include local reactions such as redness, swelling, or tenderness at the site of injection and fever less than 101 degrees F.

  • Gastroesophageal Reflux

    Gastroesophageal reflux occurs when the contents of the stomach, including stomach acid, move upward (reflux) into the esophagus (swallowing tube).

  • Ear Infection

    If your child is verbal and complains of ear pain, or crying and tugging of the ear in a younger child, you may use a warm pack applied externally over the ear to help alleviate the pain.

  • Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis)

    Conjunctivitis, or Pink Eye, is caused by viruses, bacteria or allergies. Commonly this occurs with viral upper respiratory infections.

  • Strep Throat

    If your child complains of a sore throat along with possibly fever, headache, stomachache, nausea or vomiting, call our office to make an appointment to have your child examined.

  • Teething

    Provide hard, cold teething toys to chew on. You may also give infant’s Tylenol.

  • Urinary Tract Infections

    Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are infections of the bladder, kidneys, or both. They are caused by bacteria that spread from fecal (bowel movement) material.

  • Cold or Sinus Infection

    A cold is an infection of the nose and sinuses caused by a virus, while a “sinus infection” is caused by bacteria in the nose and sinuses.