Advanced Pediatrics on CNN this Wednesday on H1N1

Advanced Pediatrics on CNN 
this Wednesday, December 2
on knowing when H1N1 infection
becomes serious

We are pleased to share the news that this Thanksgiving weekend the national health editor
for CNN, Dr. Elizabeth Cohen, flew with her producer and a film crew from CNN
headquarters in Atlanta to Cleveland to ask Advanced Pediatrics about how to know
if your child's viral illness becomes serious.

The segment, featuring Dr. Elizabeth Cohen of CNN, Dr. Arthur Lavin of Advanced
Pediatrics, and a family from the practice, will air on CNN in the 7PM hour this
Wednesday, December 2.

They called Advanced Pediatrics to seek our advice on specific signs parents could use to
know if a viral illness, such as H1N1 infection, moves from being a mild to a serious disease.

Readers of our web postings on H1N1 infection know that the distinction between mild and
serious illness has been the key concept to keep in mind when caring for your child with
any viral infection, including H1N1.

A family from the practice was gracious enough to open their home to the recording of the
segment, and we put together an approach built on six key signs of serious illness.

The Six Signs that a Viral Infection has Moved from Mild to Serious are:
  1. Struggling to breathe- a certain sense that it is now very hard for your child to get air in and/or out of his/her chest
  2. Stiff neck- this means you cannot move your neck, not that it is sore.  If you can move your chin to your chest your neck is not stiff.
  3. Severe pain in one area of the body- if one area of the body, such as a spot in the belly, or chest, or limb, develops severe and persisting pain, this is a sign for concern.
  4. Blue fingernail beds and lips- lips and fingernail areas should be pink, turning blue means something could be seriously wrong, unless they are simply chilled.
  5. Altered consciousness- this is happening if your child cannot wake up, has lost consciousness, or when awake seems quite odd- unaware of their name, or situation, or time.  This is not the tiredness and exhaustion of being sick.  When you are tired, you still wake up and act pretty much like you usually do when tired.  Altered consciousness always is alarming and not hard to notice.
  6. A sense that something is seriously wrong- Very importantly, even if no specific sign is present, if a parent feels that something is seriously wrong, we urge you to call.  We have almost never found that a parent felt like nothing was seriously wrong only to find out the situation was serious at that time.
Dr. Cohen at CNN will be broadcasting a segment discussing these six signs in an effort to help parents understand two key points:
  1. When to know if your child's illness is mild and not dangerous (none of these six items are present)
  2. When to know if your child's illness is now potentially serious (one or more of these six items are present).
A very strong thank you to all the families in the practice who were part of preparations for this broadcast.

Most importantly, I hope the broadcast on CNN helps further clarify just when to know your child is safe when ill, and when it is important to call us for help.

Again, the segment is airing sometime during the 7PM hour (Cleveland time) on Wednesday, December 2.

We really do hope you find it helpful.

Dr. Arthur Lavin

The comments contained in this electronic source of information do not constitute and are not designed to imply that they constitute any form of individual medical advice. The information provided is purely for informational purposes only and not relevant to any person's particular medical condition or situation. If you have any medical concerns about yourself or your family please contact your physician immediately. In order to provide our patients the best uninfluenced information that science has to offer,we do not accept samples of drugs, advertising tchotchkes, money, food, or any item from outside vendors.

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