Sunrise Children's Hospital
For more than three decades, Sunrise Children’s Hospital has been Nevada’s largest, most comprehensive children’s hospital.

When to take your child to the ER for an orthopedic injury

Posted on 12/26/2017

Kids love to run, jump and climb, but testing the limits of their physical abilities can result in injuries. You can treat minor bumps and bruises at home with basic first aid supplies and a hug. But when your child needs medical attention, you can count on the children’s emergency care team at Sunrise Children’s Hospital. Our physicians and specialists will help your little one feel better quickly.

When a body part looks disfigured
If your child has taken a tumble and is showing signs of discomfort, check the injured body part to see if it looks normal. The pediatric orthopedist in the accompanying video explains that possible disfigurement definitely necessitates a trip to the ER.

Bone fractures are among the most common pediatric emergencies. When kids fall down on the playground, they usually do so with their arms outstretched. This is a natural instinct to break the fall, but it can result in a wrist or elbow fracture.

Not all bone fractures result in a visible deformity. Take your child to the ER if he or she has:

  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Tenderness
  • Pain

When your child has problems using a body part
Difficulty using a body part or placing weight on it can indicate a bone fracture, but in some cases, it may be a sprain instead. A sprain occurs when a ligament is stretched too far.

Sprains aren’t terribly common in young children, as the ligaments generally have greater strength than the nearby body parts. When they do occur, the ankles, knees and wrists are most often affected.

The symptoms of a sprain are similar to those of a fracture:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Difficulty using the body part
  • Difficulty putting weight on the body part

When your child has been bitten by an animal
Another common orthopedic emergency is animal bites. A pediatric doctor should evaluate your child if he or she sustains a bite from a dog, other domesticated animal or wild animal. Even if the teeth did not break the skin, it’s possible that the underlying tendons, ligaments, nerves and muscles sustained damage.

A pediatric orthopedist can evaluate your child for musculoskeletal trauma. Your child may also need a tetanus and/or rabies shot.

Family-centered emergency care is available 24/7, every day of the year at Sunrise Children’s Hospital. Our pediatric specialists in Las Vegas are compassionate and highly trained individuals who understand the unique physical and emotional needs of our young patients. Call 911 for true medical emergencies, or call our hospital at (702) 233-5437 for general information.

Teach your children why handwashing is so important

Posted on 12/15/2017

Along with getting your child vaccinated, teaching him or her how and when to wash their hands is an effective way to guard against illnesses. Handwashing is important for everyone, but especially so for children since they tend to put their fingers in their mouths. Young kids are also generally more willing to touch potentially dirty objects than adults. If you’re having trouble convincing your little one to wash his or her hands, talk to a pediatric physician at Sunrise Children’s Hospital. We’re always here to help.

Singing a song
Singing the “Happy Birthday” song is a common technique parents and daycare providers use to convince kids to wash their hands. Your child will need to sing it twice to get to the recommended 20 seconds. Alternatively, sing the ABCs with your child to reinforce literacy skills and encourage cleanliness.

Using a handwashing chart
Just about every parent of a young child is familiar with the concept of motivational charts and stickers. Create a large chart that displays the times at which your child should wash his or her hands. Give your child a gold star each time he or she washes up without having to be reminded.

If your child is still working on learning how to read, use pictures instead of words on the chart. These pictures or words should indicate washing up:

  • After going to the bathroom
  • Before eating
  • After petting animals
  • After sneezing or coughing
  • After returning home from school

Applying glitter to your child’s hands
Some parents dread glitter because it gets everywhere, but this characteristic will help teach kids about the importance of handwashing. Shake some glitter on your child’s hands. If you have multiple children, use a different color of glitter for each.

Have your children shake hands, and walk around touching various objects or doing simple activities. After a few minutes, point out all the places where the glitter ended up.

Talk about how germs are like glitter, because they easily transfer from place to place. Then, have your children scrub the glitter off their hands to teach them about the effort required to thoroughly wash up.

Patient-focused, superior care is our top priority here at Sunrise Children’s Hospital. Our pediatric specialists in Las Vegas provide a comprehensive range of family medicine and specialty services, including emergency care, heart care and cancer care. You can get in touch with a registered nurse at our children’s hospital at (702) 233-5437.

Which toys present the biggest choking hazards for kids?

Posted on 12/11/2017

The holiday season is exciting for parents who are looking forward to seeing the delight on their children’s faces when they open their gifts. Unfortunately, not all toys are safe for kids. Even if your baby or toddler receives a toy that is indicated for his or her age range, you should check it for possible choking hazards. At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, our children’s emergency care providers encourage all parents to learn how to administer infant CPR and the pediatric Heimlich maneuver.

Toys with small parts

Babies and toddlers are incredibly curious, and they like to explore objects by putting them in their mouths. It’s all too easy for a toy with small parts—or with parts that are easily broken off—to choke a child. Test each toy your child receives to ensure its safety.

Children’s emergency care physicians recommend purchasing a choking hazard tester. Try to put all sides and parts of the toy through this cylinder, and if any of them fit, the toy is a choking hazard. Alternatively, you could use a depleted toilet paper roll.

Compressible toys

Some objects, such as toy balls, might seem perfectly safe for kids. However, some of these are compressible, which would allow a curious child to fit the object into the mouth. Keep these toys away from your child.

Impromptu toys

Often, the most dangerous toys aren’t toys at all. Emergency care doctors recommend crawling through each room of your home to examine potential threats from your baby’s perspective. Ensure that the floor and easily reached areas are free of hazards like the following:

  • Coins
  • Pen caps
  • Bottle caps
  • Buttons
  • Batteries

Toy packaging

Toy packaging is often overlooked as a choking hazard. Before giving your child any new toy, inspect it carefully for plastic wrap and foam padding.

It’s common for toy manufacturers to add a nearly invisible layer of film to the mirrors on children’s toys to guard against scratches. This film is a documented choking hazard.


Balloons are recognized as a major choking hazard by ER physicians. Never leave a young child unattended with a latex balloon or a deflated balloon. Even older children may choke on the broken pieces of a popped balloon, and it’s possible for them to inhale a balloon that they’re trying to inflate.

At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, we’re committed to healthcare excellence because we believe families in our community deserve the best of care. You can rely on our children’s emergency care team in Las Vegas if your child suffers a medical problem. For non-emergent inquiries only, call a registered nurse at (702) 233-5437.

Why your child should have a flu shot instead of the FluMist vaccine this year

Posted on 11/30/2017

When kids contract flu viruses, they miss school, feel cranky and suffer from unpleasant symptoms. And sometimes, they can develop serious complications, such as dehydration or febrile seizures. That’s why informed parents get their kids vaccinated against the flu each year. For the 2017 to 2018 flu season, vaccine experts recommend that kids get the flu shot, instead of the inhaled FluMist vaccine. If you have any questions, a pediatric provider at Sunrise Children’s Hospital is here to help.

Why the FluMist vaccine isn’t recommended this year

The FluMist vaccine has been a popular option for parents of young children, since their kids don’t have to endure the brief pinch of a needle. But to give your child maximum protection this flu season, the CDC is advising against the use of FluMist because of concerns about its effectiveness in protecting patients against a subtype of influenza A.

Who should receive a flu vaccine

Public health experts recommend that everyone ages six months and older receive a flu shot every year—as long as they do not have any contraindications. A contraindication is something that might make it less safe for a patient to receive a particular treatment. In the case of flu vaccines, one possible contraindication is a life-threatening allergy to chicken eggs.

The flu shot is particularly important for:

  • Young children
  • Relatives of young children
  • Daycare workers
  • Teachers
  • Children’s librarians
  • Hospital staff

Anyone who regularly interacts with kids at home, in the community or on the job should get vaccinated, because doing so protects the kids close to them.

How you can comfort your child during injections

It’s never easy for parents to watch their kids get shots, but the discomfort is temporary. Comfort your child by distracting him or her with a story or song. Hold your child on your lap, and keep your own demeanor and tone of voice positive.

Here at Sunrise Children’s Hospital, we’re on a mission to support the health of children throughout our Las Vegas community. Our pediatric specialists strongly encourage parents to get their kids vaccinated according to their pediatrician’s recommendations, as vaccines are the most effective way to protect vulnerable children from serious illnesses. If you would like a physician referral, you can contact our children’s hospital at (702) 233-5437.

Quit smoking to protect your child's lung health

Posted on 11/27/2017

Your child’s lungs are precious, but their health can be compromised very early in life. Pediatric specialists strongly encourage parents to quit smoking as the most effective way to protect children from the deadly effects of secondhand smoke. At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, we’re committed to supporting healthy families because we live and work in the same Las Vegas communities as our patients.

Your child’s risk of acute lung problems
There is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke. If someone in the family smokes, the child is more likely to develop acute respiratory infections, including bronchitis and pneumonia.

Bronchitis is an infection that causes inflammation of the bronchial tubes in the lungs. Children with bronchitis may have a lingering cough could last for weeks, along with these symptoms:

  • Coughing up mucus
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest discomfort

Pneumonia is an infection that causes inflammation of the air sacs in the lungs. These sacs may become filled with pus or fluid. Pneumonia can cause:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Life-threatening complications, especially in infants and young children

Your child’s risk of long-term lung problems
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory condition of the airways. It’s characterized by wheezing and shortness of breath, especially during an asthma attack.

A severe asthma attack can be life-threatening—and it can be triggered by secondhand and thirdhand smoke. Thirdhand smoke is the cigarette residue that gets on clothes, hair, carpeting, upholstery and car seats. It’s impossible to wash off, and it can compromise the health of a child who is exposed to it.

In addition to an increased risk of asthma and asthma attacks, children of smokers are more likely to have poor lung development and, later in life, lung cancer. Adding to their lifetime risk is the fact that children of smokers are more likely to become smokers themselves.

Your plan to protect your child
You have the ability to protect your child from secondhand and thirdhand smoke. Quitting isn’t easy, but your child needs you to take action. Consider talking to your physician about ways of quitting smoking.

In the meantime, protect your child by:

  • Never smoking inside the house
  • Never smoking near the house outdoors
  • Never smoking in the car, not even with the windows down
  • Never smoking near your child or other children
  • Finding a babysitter who doesn’t smoke

Sunrise Children’s Hospital is your family’s partner in health. Our pediatric specialists provide compassionate, high-quality medical services to families throughout the greater Las Vegas area. You can request a referral by calling (702) 233-5437.

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