Commonly Treated Pediatric Conditions in SA

The following are a list of the common pediatric conditions I see in my clinic:

– Cerebral palsy/post meningitis/hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy/brain atrophy

– Behavioral referrals: I get a lot of these mostly from the physiotherapist.  I find most of the parents respond to recommendations and we see excellent results.  Sometimes the improvement is so drastic that I don’t recognize the child that returns for the follow up appointment.

– Autism spectrum: I have no experience in this area, other than the time a friend took me to an autism center she used to work at in Kamploops, Canada.  Interestingly, I have had zero referral for children with autism.  A co-worker who used to work for the Disabled Children Association (DCA) informed me there is a Jeddah Autism Center which provides specialized services.

– Sensory disorders: I have not taken any courses in this area, however I am fortunate that our OTA (she is the one who used to work for the DCA) has 12 years of experience in this area.  When I suspect a sensory processing issue, I book an appointment with her and myself to complete the assessment then refer to her for treatment.  She is amazing  I am grateful to have had her help in this area because although I understand the principles, I lack the training and experience to effectively help the kids.

– Feeding disorders (usually associated with developmental delay and hypotonia): There is one speech therapist whom works at our hospital and I have never met.   They see children solely for communication.  There is also a swallowing team which consists of doctors and radiologists.  I have also never met them.  Unfortunately interdisciplinary practice, although present among the plastic/ortho surgeons and the OTs, as well as the OTs and PTs, is not widely utilized.  The hospital is also not set up to support these practices with offices being far away from each other and clinics being so busy there is little extra time.  My role with feeding has been for oral motor exercises, positioning when eating, utensil and plate adaptations, and advice on food textures.

– General developmental delay with/without hypotonia

– Spina bifida

– Positional talipes in babies

– Erb’s palsy: One of the PTs who specializes in inpatient neo-natal care has developed a protocol for babies with erb’s palsy.  The protocol starts from the second the baby is born and continues until the condition has resolved.  The protocol is quite effective and we see excellent results.

– Down’s syndrome

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