Conditions & Topics (A - Z)
Select from the alphabetical list to find the symptom or condition you're looking for.
A special ultrasound that provides an image that looks more like a picture. Often times used to look at the face.
An abdominal migraine is like a migraine headache, but it occurs in the abdomen area, usually near the navel or midline. The stomach pain associated with abdominal migraines can be very severe.
A diagnostic imaging technique which creates images from the rebound of high frequency sound waves in the internal organs.
Gel is applied to the abdomen and the ultrasound transducer glides over the gel on the abdomen to create the image.
Used to detect any abnormalities of the abdominal organs (i.e., kidneys, liver, pancreas, gallbladder), such as gallstones or tumors.
Abdominal Wall Defect
A birth defect in which the internal organs of the abdomen push outside the body through an opening (usually just right of the belly button) in the wall of the abdomen. It is also known as gastroschesis.
A simple study that will give the physician an idea of how the internal organs look.
A type of surgery using a laparoscope, which is inserted into one or more small incisions, to examine the abdominal cavity. It is also known as endoscopy, laparoscopy or minimally invasive surgery.
This is an invasive procedure done in the electrophysiology laboratory, and involves a small, thin tube (catheter) being inserted into the heart through a vessel in the groin or arm. The procedure is done in a manner similar to the electrophysiology studies (EPS) described above.
The passage of nutrients in food from the small intestine into the cells in the body.
The ability of the eye to focus.
The active ingredient in some pain relievers. Thousands of women have taken acetaminophen containing pain relievers during pregnancy and there has been no association with an increased chance for birth defects, when used at or below the recommended dosage.
A chronic disorder of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands. Acne is characterized by black heads, pimple outbreaks, cysts, infected abscesses, and (sometimes) scarring.
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
A disease, caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which kills or impairs cells of the immune system and progressively destroys the body's ability to fight infections and certain cancers. HIV is most commonly spread in teens and adults by sexual contact with an infected partner. HIV is most commonly spread in infants and children by vertical transmission from an infected mother while in the womb or during delivery.
Acupuncture and Massage Services
The Jane B. Pettit Pain and Palliative Care Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin offers acupuncture and massage to all children who seek these unique services. Children do not need to be Pain Clinic patients.
Severe; sharp; begins quickly.
Acute inflammation of the appendix due to infection. It is also known as appendicitis.
Inflammation of mucous membranes of the bronchial tubes.
Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL)
Accounts for about 75 to 80 percent of the childhood leukemias. In this form of the disease, the lymphocyte cell line is affected. The lymphocytes normally fight infection. With acute lymphocytic leukemia, the bone marrow makes too many of these lymphocytes and they do not mature correctly. It is also known as lymphoblastic or lymphoid.
Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
Accounts for about 20 percent of the childhood leukemias. Acute myelogenous leukemia is a cancer of the blood in which too many granulocytes, a type of white blood cell, are produced in the marrow. It is also known as granulocytic, myelocytic, myeloblastic and myeloid.
Acute Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)
Is due to a traumatic injury that either results in a bruise (also called a contusion), a partial tear or a complete tear (called a transection) in the spinal cord. SCI is a common cause of permanent disability and death in children.
The result of an underactive adrenal gland. An underactive adrenal gland produces insufficient amounts of cortisol (a steroid hormone that helps to control the body's use of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, suppresses inflammatory reactions in the body, and affects immune system functions) and aldolsterone (a steroid hormone that controls sodium and potassium in the blood). Four in every 100,000 people have Addison's disease. Onset of the disease may occur at any age.
Lymphoid tissue in the throat behind the palate.
Surgical removal of the adenoids.
ADD (Attention-Deficit Disorder)
A behavior disorder, usually first diagnosed in childhood, that is characterized by inattention, impulsivity, and, in some cases, hyperactivity. It is also known as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and hyperactivity disorder and is diagnosed and treated in the Child Development Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.
ADHD (Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder)
A behavior disorder, usually first diagnosed in childhood, that is characterized by inattention, impulsivity, and, in some cases, hyperactivity. It is also known as attention-deficit disorder (ADD) and hyperactivity disorder and is diagnosed and treated in the Child Development Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.
An emotional or behavioral reaction to an identifiable stressful event or change in a person's life that is considered maladaptive or somehow not an expected healthy response to the event or change. The reaction must occur within three months of the identified stressful event or change happening. The identifiable stressful event or change in the life of a child or adolescent may be a family move, parental divorce or separation, the loss of a pet, birth of a brother or sister, to name a few.
A period of life in which the biological and psychosocial transition from childhood to adulthood occurs.
Adolescent Health and Medicine Program
Adolescence is a time of physical, psychological and social changes unlike any period of growth and change your child has experienced before. This can present a unique set of challenges to you and your child when certain health care needs arise. And, adolescents have diverse health needs including those related to their physical development, nutrition, body image and emotional well-being. The Adolescent Health and Medicine Program at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin was created to address these diverse health care concerns facing children ages 10-21.
A subspeciality of pediatric medicine with a focus on providing holistic health care to adolescent patients and treating medical problems that are common during adolescence.
Adoption (International) Clinic
The International Adoption Clinic at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin is a unique resource for families who are adopting children from international settings, many of whom may have medical or developmental needs.
The outer portion of the adrenal gland that secretes hormones that are vital to the body.
The pair of adrenal glands are located on top of both kidneys. Adrenal glands work hand-in-hand with the hypothalamus and pituitary gland.
One of two chemicals (the other is norepinephrine) released by the adrenal gland that increases the speed and force of heartbeats. It dilates the airways to improve breathing and narrows blood vessels in the skin and intestine so that an increased flow of blood reaches the muscles and allows them to cope with the demands of exercise. It is also a drug that can be given in anaphylactic emergencies. It is also known as epinephrine.
Adult Congenital Heart Disease Clinic
As one of the few Adult Congenital Heart Disease Clinics in the country, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin provides state-of-the-art, comprehensive diagnostic and interventional cardiac care to an increasing number of people born with heart conditions who are living into adulthood.
Legal documents stating a patient's medical preferences in the event the patient should become incapable of voicing his/her opinion. These documents must be completed by any patient 18 years of age and older.
A person who speaks on behalf of or in promotion of another person's best interest.
A type of physical exercise that increases the work of the heart and lungs. Examples are running, jogging, swimming, dancing.
A category of mental health problems that include depressive disorders. It is also known as mood disorder.
A Greek word that literally means "fear of the marketplace." This anxiety disorder involves the fear of experiencing a panic attack in a place or situation from which escape may be difficult or embarrassing.
Transmission of an infection through inhaling airborne droplets of the disease, which may exist in the air as a result of a cough or sneeze from an infected person.
Airway, Digestive and Voice Center
Children with complex aerodigestive abnormalities, which impact breathing, voice, swallowing and feeding, require integrated support from multiple specialists. The Airway, Digestive and Voice Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin provides and coordinates the full range of services these children need for proper diagnosis and effective treatment.
Includes choking, suffocation and strangulation. Prevents oxygen from entering the lungs and brain. Lack of oxygen to the brain for more than four minutes may result in brain damage or death.
A hormone secreted by the adrenal cortex which affects blood pressure and saline balance.
An acquired, abnormal immune response to a substance that can cause a broad range of inflammatory reactions.
A condition in which the body is not able to tolerate eating certain foods, or exposure to certain animals, plants or other substances.
The Asthma and Allergy Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin welcomes children and adults with a wide range of allergy, asthma and immunology problems.
Treatment of allergy to substances such as pollens, house dust mites, fungi, and stinging insect venom involving giving gradually increasing doses of the substance, or allergen, to which the person is allergic. It is also called desensitization, hyposensitization and immunotherapy.
The substance that triggers an allergic reaction.
Swelling of the inside of the nose, usually leading to a runny nose and itching of the eyes and nose.
Thalassemia is an inherited disorder that affects the production of normal hemoglobin (a type of protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to the tissues of the body). Thalassemia includes a number of different forms of anemia. The severity and type of anemia depends upon the number of genes that are affected. Alpha thalassemia is caused by mutations in the alpha chain of the hemoglobin molecule.
Alpha-Feto Protein (AFP)
A protein normally produced by the fetal liver and is present in the fluid surrounding the fetus (amniotic fluid), and crosses the placenta into the mother's blood.
Alpha-Feto Protein (AFP) Screening
A blood test that measures the level of alpha-fetoprotein in the mothers' blood during pregnancy. It is also known as maternal serum AFP (MSAFP).
Used alone, without recommended standard treatment.
When a child's gender is in question at birth, because genitals may not appear clearly male or female, the child is said to have ambiguous genitalia. Ambiguous genitalia can be a traumatizing experience for parents.
The reduction or dimming of vision in an eye that appears to be normal. It is also known as lazy eye.
Absence or cessation of menstrual periods.
From the beginning and lifelong; menstruation never begins at puberty.
Due to some physical cause and usually of later onset; a condition in which menstrual periods which were at one time normal and regular become increasing abnormal and irregular or absent.
American Sign Language (ASL)
Manual (hand) language with its own syntax and grammar used primarily by people who are deaf. It is also known as sign language.
Involves removing some of the amniotic fluid using a needle that is inserted through the abdominal wall into the "bag of water" or amniotic sack and aspirating some of the fluid. The test is performed using ultrasound to guide the needle insertion. There is a slightly increased risk of inducing contractions that may lead to preterm labor and delivery. These risks will be discussed with you prior to the procedure.
Amniotic Fluid Complications
Too much or too little amniotic fluid in the membranes surrounding the fetus may indicate a problem with the pregnancy. Too much fluid can put excessive pressure on the mother's uterus, leading to preterm labor, or can cause pressure on the mother's diaphragm leading to breathing difficulties. Fluids tend to build up in cases of uncontrolled diabetes, multiple pregnancy, incompatible blood types or birth defects. Too little fluid may indicate birth defects, growth retardation or stillbirth.
Your physician or midwife uses an instrument to break the bag of water that surrounds the fetus. This is normally done to help labor to progress. It is also known as artificial rupture of membranes (AROM).
Staff in the Orthopedic Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin has a wide range of experience and provides state-of-the-art treatment for amputations and other conditions.
A small tear in the anus that can cause bleeding, itching or pain.
An absence of the sense of pain without loss of consciousness.
A simple study that will give the physician an idea of how the internal organs look.
Any drug intended to alleviate pain.
A sudden, severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction caused by food allergy, insect stings, or medications. Symptoms can include hives, swelling (especially of the lips and face), difficulty breathing (either because of swelling in the throat or an asthmatic reaction), vomiting, diarrhea, cramping and a drop in blood pressure. It is also known as anaphylaxis.
A sudden, severe, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction caused by food allergy, insect stings, or medications. Symptoms can include hives, swelling (especially of the lips and face), difficulty breathing (either because of swelling in the throat or an asthmatic reaction), vomiting, diarrhea, cramping and a drop in blood pressure. It is also known as anaphylactic shock.
A hormone secreted by the adrenal cortex which affects the development of male characteristics.
A common blood disorder that occurs when there are fewer red blood cells than normal, or there is a low concentration of hemoglobin in the blood.
A neural tube defect that results in a condition that is not compatible with life. A large portion of the brain, skull and scalp are absent but with a somewhat "normal" appearing face.
Anencephaly, prenatal diagnosis of
Through the use of prenatal ultrasound (examining the fetus using ultrasound imaging before birth) the diagnosis of some birth defects can be detected. With this knowledge, families can seek out information which will allow them to participate more fully in decision making and planning care for their infant. Anencephaly is a neural tube defect that results in a condition that is not compatible with life. A large portion of the brain, skull and scalp are absent but with a somewhat "normal" appearing face.
Medication administered for the relief of pain and sensation during surgery.
Refers to a loss of sensation. During labor, anesthesia may be used to assist with pain management. An anesthesiologist, or physician who specializes in the administration of anesthetic agents, will usually administer and monitor the effects of the medicine.
- Local - a type of nerve block to a small specific area of the body that will deaden sensations. There is no loss of consciousness but there is a numbing of the treated area of the body.
- Regional - a type of nerve block that blocks pain sensation to an area of the body. During labor a common regional anesthetic used is an epidural. There is no loss of consciousness but there is a numbing of the treated area of the body.
A physician who specializes in administering medications or other agents that prevent or relieve pain, especially during surgery.
Wrong number of chromosomes.
Angelman Syndrome (AS)
People with Angelman syndrome have mental retardation, severe speech problems, stiff arm movements and a stiff, uncoordinated walk. They may have seizures and often have inappropriate outbursts of laughter. Results when a baby inherits both copies of chromosome #15 from the father (rather than one from the mother and one from the father).
An allergic reaction that causes swelling deeper in the layers of the skin. It most commonly occurs on the hands, feet and face (lips and eyes).
A procedure that provides a scan of arteries going to and through the brain. It is also known as arteriogram.
A procedure usually done in the cardiac catheterization laboratory that uses a catheter (tube) with a balloon in the tip to open up a narrowed valve or blood vessel. It is also known as balloon angioplasty.
A benign tumor in the skin, made up of blood or lymph vessels.
The use of a small balloon on the tip of a catheter inserted into a blood vessel to open up an area of blockage inside the vessel.
Allergens found in animals are a common cause of allergic reactions in children. Household pets, such as cats and dogs, are the most common sources of animal allergens.
Absence of the iris, the colored part of the eye.
A type of arthritis that affects the spine.
Absence of a normal opening between the anus and the rectum.
An eating disorder characterized by low body weight (less than 85 percent of normal weight for height and age), a distorted body image and an intense fear of gaining weight. It is also known as anorexia nervosa.
An eating disorder characterized by low body weight (less than 85 percent of normal weight for height and age), a distorted body image and an intense fear of gaining weight. It is also known as anorexia.
Failure of the ovaries to produce or release mature eggs.
Medicines that neutralize stomach acid.
Same as prenatal; time period before birth.
The time before delivery or birth.
The front side.
The front section of the eye's interior where aqueous humor flows in and out of providing nourishment to the eye and surrounding tissues.
A protein that is manufactured by lymphocytes to neutralize or destroy an antigen or foreign protein. Many types of antibodies are protective against infection. Rarely, antibodies are produced against tissues in the body resulting in illness (autoimmune disease). It is also known as immunoglobulin.
Medicines that help calm spasms in the intestine.
Medicines that help control diarrhea.
Antidiuretic Hormone (ADH)
A hormone secreted by the pituitary gland which helps the body conserve the right amount of water. It is also known as vasopressin.
Medicines that help prevent and control nausea and vomiting.
A substance that can trigger an immune response causing the production of antibodies as part of the body's defense against infection and disease.
A group of drugs that block the effects of histamine, a chemical released in body fluids during an allergic reaction.
Drugs or medications that reduce the symptoms and signs of inflammation.
These are a relatively new type of medication being used to help control the symptoms of asthma. These medications help to decrease the narrowing of the lung and to decrease the chance of fluids in the lungs. These are usually given by mouth.
Medicines that help reduce or stop muscle spasms in the intestines.
The opening at the end of the digestive tract where bowel movements leave the body.
Over time, normal fears fade as children learn more about what to expect from their environment and relationships with others. When their fears do not fade and begin to interfere with the child or adolescent's daily life and activities, an anxiety disorder may be present and parents should promptly seek the evaluation of their child or teen by a physician. There are many different anxiety disorders that affect children and adolescents and require clinical care by a physician or other health care professional.
A scoring system used in the delivery room based on an assessment of the newborns heart rate, breathing effort, color, muscle tone and reflexes. Each of these five areas is graded on a two-point scale. The highest apgar score available is 10 if each of these 5 areas is at an optimal range. A lower score indicates less responsiveness of the newborn. The scoring is normally done at one and five minutes. It can be done every five minutes for up to 20 minutes or until two successive scores are greater than seven or until the team has deemed the newborn unresponsive to resuscitation efforts.
An illness that causes small ulcers to appear in the mouth, usually inside the lips, on the cheeks, or on the tongue. Aphthous stomatitis is also known as "canker sores."
A pause in breathing that lasts 20 seconds or longer; or a pause accompanied by cyanosis (blue color due to less than required amount of oxygen) and bradycardia (slower than normal heart rate).
Apnea Of Prematurity
May be due to a disturbance in the brain's breathing control center, called central apnea. With obstructive apnea, breathing stops because something is blocking the airway. Problems in other organs can also affect the breathing control center. Apnea of prematurity may not have an identifiable cause other than immaturity of the central nervous system.
An operation to remove the appendix.
Irritation, inflammation, and pain in the appendix, caused by infection, scarring, or obstruction (blockage).
A small pouch attached to the first portion of the large intestine (the cecum); it has no known function.
The clear, watery fluid in the front of the eyeball.
Dark area of skin that surrounds the nipple of the breast.
An abnormal heart rhythm; a fast, slow or irregular heartbeat. It is also known as dysrhythmia.
A tube is inserted into a major artery. An umbilical artery catheter is placed in on of the arteries of the umbilical cord. An arterial line can also be placed in another major artery of the body if the umbilical cord cannot be used (such as in abdominal wall defects). Fluids and medications can be given through this line; as well as blood pressure monitored and blood samples can be drawn for lab work. It is also known as umbilical arterial line (UAC/UAL).
A procedure that provides a scan of arteries going to and through the brain. It is also known as angiogram.
Pain in the joint.
Inflammation of the joints.
Artificial Rupture Of Membranes (AROM)
Your physician or midwife uses an instrument to break the bag of water that surrounds the fetus. This is normally done to help labor to progress. It is also known as amniotomy.
X-ray of a joint.
With the use of an endoscope, surgeons can look at the interior of a joint. This technique is most often used to inspect and repair the inside of the knee joint.
The process of supporting breathing by manual or mechanical means when normal breathing is inefficient or has stopped.
The portion of the large intestine that is on the right side of the abdomen.
Abnormal accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
One type of pervasive developmental disorder that is characterized by severe and sustained impairment in social interaction and the development of restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests and activities.
Technical tools and devices such as crutches, walkers, wagons, wheelchairs, reclining wheelchairs, alphabet boards, text telephones or text-to-speech conversion software used to assist people with physical or emotional disorders in performing certain actions, tasks and activities.
A chronic, inflammatory lung disease characterized by recurrent breathing problems usually triggered by allergens.
Asthma, Allergy and Immunology Center
The Asthma, Allergy and Immunology Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin welcomes adults and children with a wide range of asthma, allergy and immunology problems.
A vision problem that results in blurred images.
Asymmetrical Septal Hypertrophy (ASH)
Enlarged heart muscle that causes impeded blood flow. It is also known as hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (HOCM), hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or idiopathic hypertrophic subaortic stenosis (IHSS).
Lacking symmetry; parts of the body are unequal in shape or size.
The collapse of groups of alveoli or air sacs in the lungs.
Lack of normal muscle strength in the large intestine; caused by overuse of laxatives or by a disease called Hirschsprung's disease.
A skin disorder that usually appears in babies or very young children, and may last until the child reaches adolescence or adulthood. Atopic dermatitis causes the skin to itch, turn red and flake. It is also known as eczema.
Lack of a normal opening, from the esophagus, the intestines or the anus.
Atrial Septal Defect (ASD)
A hole in the wall between the right and left atria (the two upper chambers of the heart).
Atrioventricular Canal (AV Canal or AVC)
Refers to a congenital heart defect involving an opening low in the atrial septum, an opening high in the ventricular septum and abnormal development of the mitral and/or tricuspid valves.
Refers to chambers in the heart. There is a right and left atrium.
Attention-Deficit Disorder (ADD)
A behavior disorder, usually first diagnosed in childhood, that is characterized by inattention, impulsivity, and, in some cases, hyperactivity. It is also known as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and hyperactivity disorder.
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
A behavior disorder, usually first diagnosed in childhood, that is characterized by inattention, impulsivity, and, in some cases, hyperactivity. It is also known as attention-deficit disorder (ADD) and hyperactivity disorder.
A health care professional trained to identify and measure hearing impairments and related disorders using a variety of tests and procedures.
The study of hearing and hearing disorders.
In the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin Audiology Clinic, infants, children and adolescents are evaluated for hearing problems. Typical reasons children are referred to us may include hearing concerns, speech and language delays, learning problems in school, failed newborn hearing screenings and recurrent ear infections.
Auditory Brainstem Response (ABR) Test
Test used for hearing in infants and young children, or to test for brain functioning in unresponsive patients.
Eighth cranial nerve that connects the inner ear to the brainstem.
Auditory Processing Disorder Clinic
Children's Hospital of Wisconsin offers diagnosis and treatment for children with auditory processing disorder (APD). Children with APD have difficulty responding to and understanding speech in a number of situations. They are not having difficulty hearing sound, but have a hard time understanding what the sound means.
Augmentation Of Labor
Refers to medicine/methods used to make uterine contractions, that have already been happening, become more effective and dilating and effacing the cervix in preparation for birth.
A neurological and developmental disorder that usually appears during the first three years of life. A child with autism appears to live in his or her own world, showing little interest in others, and a lack of social awareness. The focus of an autistic child is a consistent routine and includes an interest in repeating odd and peculiar behaviors. Autistic children often have problems in communication, avoid eye contact and show limited attachment to others. It is also known as autistic disorder and is diagnosed and treated in the Child Development Center at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.
Hearing loss that may be associated with an autoimmune disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus.
A group of diseases in which the body's immune system fights itself.
Conditions in which the body makes antibodies against one's own normal body chemicals. In these diseases, antibodies cannot tell antigens in the inside of the cell from antigens outside of the cell. When the antibodies attack the internal cells, the reactions can be local - in just a small area, or systemic - throughout the whole body. The skin and connective tissues (cartilage, bone, tendons) are most affected but other tissues can be affected, as well, including nerve and muscle.
Autoimmune lymphoproliferative disorders (ALPS)
There are many different disorders that affect a child's immune system. Many of these diseases are treated in the Primary Immunodeficiency Program at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. They also are known as immunodeficiencies, immune deficiencies, primary immunodeficiencies, or primary immune deficiencies.
One of the first 22 pairs of chromosomes.
Autosomal Dominant Inheritance
When a genetic condition is caused by a change in a gene on one of the first 22 pairs of chromosomes, which, when present in one copy, causes a trait or disease to be expressed.
Autosomal Recessive Inheritance
When a genetic condition is caused by a change in a gene on one of the first 22 pairs of chromosomes, which, when present in two copies, causes a trait or disease to be expressed.