Parents deliberately making child ill can be deadly - WSPA.com

Parents deliberately making child ill can be deadly

Updated: Aug 26, 2013 10:06 AM
  • HealthMore>>

  • Too few teens receive HPV shot

    Too few teens receive HPV shot

    An "unacceptably low" number of girls and boys are getting the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, which protects against cervical, anal and other cancers, U.S. health officials said Thursday.
    An "unacceptably low" number of girls and boys are getting the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, which protects against cervical, anal and other cancers, U.S. health officials said Thursday.
  • Teenage boys want intimacy, not just sex

    Teenage boys want intimacy, not just sex

    The stereotype of the sex-crazed teenage boy may be dead wrong, according to a small study that asked boys what they really want from romantic relationships.
    The stereotype of the sex-crazed teenage boy may be dead wrong, according to a small study that asked boys what they really want from romantic relationships.
  • Bacteria in semen may affect HIV transmission, levels

    Bacteria in semen may affect HIV transmission, levels

    Human semen is naturally colonized by bacteria, and a new study suggests the microbes might have a role to play in both HIV transmission and levels in infected men.
    Human semen is naturally colonized by bacteria, and a new study suggests the microbes might have a role to play in both HIV transmission and levels in infected men.

MONDAY, Aug. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Parents sometimes fabricate an illness in children, and doctors and other health care providers need to be on the lookout for this type of child abuse, experts warn.

"It is probably more common than we realize" and often goes unrecognized, Dr. Harriet MacMillan, a pediatrician and child psychiatrist at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, said in a university news release.

Although the occurrence is relatively rare, the death rate for children in such cases in 6 percent to 9 percent, with similar rates of permanent injury and long-term disability, said MacMillan, who conducts family violence research.

MacMillan co-authored a paper in the September issue of the journal Pediatrics that is meant to improve doctors' understanding of this issue, which has long been referred to as Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

Doctors should be suspicious when they see a child with a persistent or recurrent illness that can't be explained, especially when their signs or symptoms don't seem believable. There is no typical fabricated illness, and a parent might bring their child in for treatment of all types of problems, including bleeding, seizures, urinary tract infections or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

"It really comes down to conducting a very careful history and physical examination, with an emphasis on communication with all health care providers who have seen the child," MacMillan said. "It's important that we are thorough in seeking comprehensive information about contact with health care providers, while adhering to privacy legislation."

Communication among health care providers is critical because a child could be seen in many different settings.

"This is the type of condition where it is essential for clinicians to review medical records and speak with other health care providers to have complete information in conducting their assessment," MacMillan said.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by WorldNow

250 International Dr.
Spartanburg, S.C. 29303

Telephone: 864.576.7777
Fax: 864.587.5430
Email: webmaster@wspa.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.