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8 Times Your Pediatrician Wants You To Call

How to know when the less-obvious, puzzling symptoms are worth picking up the phone and calling the doctor.

By Patty Onderko, Parenting

It's not the super-high temp or the bloody head bonk that trips us up. The less obvious situations are the ones that leave us wondering: To call the doc or not? Kathryn Emery, M.D., an ER physician at the Children's Hospital at the University of Colorado, Denver--and a mom--reveals when she'd pick up the phone:


A fever that doesn't come down an hour after giving your child a pain reliever, such as ibuprofen. Ditto a high temp that responds to medicine but hangs on for several days--or goes away and comes back a day or so later.
Abdominal pain, especially if it's on the right side. (This could be a sign of an inflamed appendix.)
A fall that causes swelling in the injured area (arm, leg, ankle, etc.) and that your child is still babying and complaining about the next day.
Unexplained poor food intake with fever for two days or decreased urine for one day (or both).
Any difficulty swallowing. Your child could have something lodged in his throat or may be having an allergic reaction.
Headache that's accompanied by a fever or vomiting.
Any kind of rash or skin issue that makes you think "Eww, what is that?"
When something just isn't right. "Trust your gut and call," Dr. Emery says. "I would!"

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