Sunrise Children's Hospital
For more than three decades, Sunrise Children’s Hospital has been Nevada’s largest, most comprehensive children’s hospital.
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What Is the Impact of Lung Cancer on Children?

Posted on 11/23/2016

Lung cancer is primarily triggered by toxins such as those found in cigarette smoke. Because of this, lung cancer is rare in pediatric patients. When a child is diagnosed with lung cancer at a children’s hospital, it is usually a secondary tumor of the lungs. This means that the cancer originated elsewhere and spread to the lungs. Primary lung tumors are quite rare, as you’ll learn when you watch this featured video presented by a pediatric pulmonologist at Sunrise Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas.

Effects of the Disease
Lung cancer is a complex disease that can affect pediatric patients in many ways. The direct effects of childhood cancer can be seen in the symptoms it causes. Bronchial tumors, which may be benign or malignant, can cause the following symptoms:

  • Coughing
  • Impaired breathing
  • Spitting up blood
  • Frequent respiratory infections

Pleuropulmonary blastoma (PPB) is a rare primary lung cancer known as soft tissue sarcoma. The signs and symptoms of PPB can vary based on the child’s age and whether he or she has Type I, II, or III PPB. Children under the age of two who have Type I PPB tend to display the symptoms of respiratory distress, including abnormal and difficult breathing. Children older than age two who have Types II or III PPB tend to experience general symptoms such as the following:

  • Fatigue/low energy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Difficult breathing

Effects of Cancer Treatments
At a children’s hospital that provides specialized cancer care, children are given the treatments that can help them survive their diagnosis. But often, cancer treatments can cause side effects. These side effects vary widely, depending on the specific treatment that is used. Before administering any cancer treatments, oncologists thoroughly explain the potential risks and benefits.

Effects of Hospitalization
Children’s hospitals try to make hospitalization a positive experience for children, but it’s to be expected that young cancer patients would experience anxieties related to their hospitalizations. A prolonged stay at a children’s hospital may lead to symptoms of stress, including sleep disturbances, bedwetting, and fearfulness. A children’s hospital may connect families to Child Life specialists who can help.

Childhood cancer requires specialized care, which families will find at Sunrise Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas. Our Pediatric Oncology and Special Services offers a continuum of care to families, including Child Life services to help young patients cope with the emotional effects of a cancer diagnosis. Call our Consult-A-Nurse line at (702) 233-5437 to request a referral to a specialist at our children’s hospital.


How to Stop Passing Stress and Anxiety to Your Children

Posted on 11/23/2016

It’s easy to overlook the effects of parental stress on children, especially when parents are preoccupied with their own worries. But in fact, children do readily sense tension in the household and this affects them in multiple ways that harm their well-being and development. It’s important for parents in Las Vegas and beyond to take a deep breath and remind themselves to nurture positivity. At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, our Child Life Department works to minimize the stress of childhood illnesses and hospitalization.

Prevent Media Overload
Media overload is one of the most common sources of toxic stress for parents and children alike. Exercise caution about watching distressing news coverage on the TV when children are within earshot. Consider limiting the entire family’s usage of social media accounts. Parents might even consider designating one day per month as a day to “unplug” and enjoy simple activities together as a family.

Listen Proactively
To a parent, with all of the responsibilities of adulthood, a child’s anxieties might seem insignificant by comparison. However, children recognize that they have little control over the world around them and this can be a source of considerable stress. Although it may be tempting, try to avoid giving responses to children like, “There’s nothing to worry about. You’re just over-reacting.” Instead, encourage children to talk about their worries. Start the conversation with an observation, such as, “You seem to be upset after that argument that mommy and daddy had. Do you want to talk about it?”

Model Positive Stress Management
Kids of all ages are like mirrors; they reflect what they see from their parents. Show your children how to manage stressors positively. If the family is stuck in a traffic jam, refrain from getting frustrated with the delay. Instead, say something like, “This gives us some extra time to talk. What is everyone looking forward to when we get to our destination?”

At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, we understand that medical problems can inflict stress and anxiety on families. Our Child Life specialists are available throughout our children’s hospital to help young patients and their families cope in positive ways. For general information about our children’s hospital in Las Vegas, call our Consult-A-nurse line at (702) 233-5437.


When Should Kids Be Treated in the Hospital for Fever?

Posted on 11/19/2016

Since a child’s immune system is still developing, periodic illnesses are to be expected. In most cases, a pediatric fever requires no special care. However, it’s always a good idea to check with a pediatrician before giving medicine to a young child. In some cases, a fever may need to be evaluated at a children’s hospital. If your child is in need of emergency care for a serious fever, the team at Sunrise Children’s Hospital is available around the clock.

Considering the Possible Causes
Fevers aren’t always caused by infections and other illnesses. In some cases, a child may develop a low-grade fever after receiving a vaccination or because the child is overdressed in warm clothes. If the child appears to be overdressed, changing his or her clothes to cooler selections may resolve the problem. However, any elevated temperature in a newborn should be evaluated by a pediatrician, even if it appears to be caused by being overdressed.

Taking Your Child’s Temperature
Pediatricians strongly recommend that parents keep a thermometer readily available in the home. Taking a temperature rectally is the most accurate method for children under three years of age. Older children can use an oral thermometer. If a child’s temperature is lower than 102 degrees Fahrenheit, he or she likely doesn’t require medical attention. The exception is if the child is three months or younger; these infants should receive emergency care for all fevers. If the child is older than three months, parents can call the pediatrician to ask if the child needs to be seen.

Assessing Additional Symptoms
In older children, it’s helpful to assess their other symptoms to determine how severe the illness is. If the child is still playing and eating normally, and appears alert, then the fever is likely not serious. If the child appears lethargic, has a stiff neck, appears dehydrated, or cannot keep down liquids, then he or she should receive emergency care.

High-quality pediatric emergency care is just part of what we do here at Sunrise Children’s Hospital. Our compassionate medical providers in Las Vegas offer specialized care for high-risk pregnancies, surgery patients, and cancer patients. Call 911 without delay if your child needs emergency care; otherwise, you can direct non-emergent inquiries to a registered nurse at (702) 233-5437.

Raising Awareness of Childhood Obesity

Posted on 9/26/2016

Childhood obesity is a serious public health issue that compromises the wellness of the next generation. National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, which takes place in September, strives to raise awareness about the epidemic of obesity among U.S. children. At Sunrise Children’s Hospital, our specialists in pediatrics encourage our neighbors throughout Las Vegas to become informed of the solutions for preventing and treating childhood obesity.

The Facts and Stats About Childhood Obesity

During the past three decades, the incidence of obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in teens. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), seven percent of children ages six through 11 in the U.S. were obese in 1980. By 2012, that statistic had risen to almost 18%. Adolescents have been similarly affected. In 1980, the percentage of adolescents aged 12 through 19 years was at just five percent; by 2012, that statistic had risen to 21%. Children who are overweight or obese are at a significantly higher risk of short-term and long-term health consequences. In childhood and adolescence, these individuals may be diagnosed with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, prediabetes, bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and psychological issues. Later in life, these individuals display a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, certain cancers, osteoarthritis, and type 2 diabetes.

The Role of Parents in Preventing Obesity

Parents play an integral role in preventing childhood obesity, since parents are typically responsible for purchasing groceries, preparing meals, and setting house rules. Parents also set an example for their children. Kids who see their parents making healthy lifestyle choices are more likely to follow suit and vice versa.

The Responsibilities of Communities

The bulk of the work of preventing childhood obesity is done at home, but communities also play a role. Community leaders can advocate for “walkable” neighborhoods and work to eliminate food deserts, which limit families’ abilities to obtain fresh, healthy foods. Similarly, schools can implement nutrition education programs and offer healthy choices in cafeterias.

Here at Sunrise Children’s Hospital, our pediatric clinical dietitians are available to provide nutritional information and wellness education for families in the greater Las Vegas area. Our children’s hospital is also a leading provider of high-risk pregnancy care and children’s emergency care. You can reach a registered nurse by calling (702) 233-5437.


Preparing Your Teen for Her First Gynecologic Visit

Posted on 9/19/2016

As children grow older, it’s important that they begin to learn how to navigate the healthcare system. Handing over certain healthcare responsibilities to your daughter and acknowledging that she has a confidential relationship with her pediatrician are essential steps to raising a young adult with healthcare literacy. When it’s time for your daughter’s first gynecologic visit, you can put your trust in Sunrise Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas.

Explain what your teen can expect at the appointment.

It’s perfectly normal for teens to experience a little anxiety before going to the children’s hospital for a first gynecologic appointment. Often, this anxiety is attributable to a lack of understanding about what to expect. Explain to your daughter that the initial visit primarily consists of a discussion between her and her doctor. Her doctor will ask lots of questions about her health history and family health history, including questions about her typical menstrual period and sexual activity. Your daughter can also expect to receive a general physical exam, which includes a check of her vital signs and an evaluation of any symptoms she’s experiencing. Sometimes, an external genital exam is included at the first gynecologic visit, although pelvic exams are usually not performed at this time unless atypical symptoms are present.

Help your teen feel at ease.

At this stage in your daughter’s life, it’s quite possible that she’s experiencing heightened self-consciousness about her body. Reassure your daughter that doctors are respectful, compassionate professionals who have already seen everything there is to see about the human body. Remind your daughter that the patient-doctor relationship is strictly confidential and that the most important thing is for her to be completely honest with her doctor about her health, including sexual activity.

Make suggestions for what she might want to discuss.

Your teen’s first gynecologic appointment is a good opportunity for her to get the answers to the questions that she may be too embarrassed to ask you about. Let your daughter know that she can ask the doctor about anything—from mood swings to acne to weight.

Sunrise Children’s Hospital has been serving the healthcare needs of families in Las Vegas for more than three decades. At our children’s hospital, you’ll find a comprehensive range of care-from high-risk pregnancy prenatal care to preventive pediatrics to children’s emergency care. If you have a general healthcare question, you can speak with a registered nurse at (702) 233-5437.


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