KKH QuickAdvice

Quick answers to common health concerns in women and children!

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Women

Children

Please note: KKH QuickAdvice is a quick reference guide on common health concerns in women and children. It is a compilation of Frequently Asked Questions, and may not address all medical concerns or conditions as we are continually adding to this list.

The information here is for educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional care. When in doubt or if you have reason for concern, do consult your family doctor who may refer you or your child to a specialist or tertiary care centre like KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital.

Quick Answers to common health concerns in women

IVF Matters


I am on IVF treatment and have forgotten to keep my injections in the fridge. Will it be ok for me to take the injection tomorrow?


If the injection has been out of the fridge for more than 1 hour, you must consult the following:

  • During office hours (Monday to Friday - 8.30am to 5.30pm), call KKIVF Centre
  • After office hours, call KKH Main Line (24 hours) at 6225 5554 and request to speak to the Pharmacist on call



I am on IVF treatment and my implantation was done last week. Now I am 4 weeks pregnant and still spotting.


While mild spotting for 1 to 2 days is common, you may wish to consult your doctor to seek proper assessment and advice.


If your spotting continues beyond 1 to 2 days, or is accompanied with cramps and blood clots, please consult your doctor immediately, or visit KKH's O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women's Tower,KKH.


Labour and Delivery


I am 38 weeks pregnant and have been experiencing contractions with bleeding. Should I go to the hospital now?


When you experience any of the symptoms of labour, such as pain due to uterine contractions, that is progressively frequent and lasting longer each time, bloody discharge or leakage of amniotic fluid, you should go to the hospital.


If you are registered to deliver at KKH, you should report to the Delivery Suite located on Level 2 of the Women's Tower at KKH. If you are in too much pain to walk, you can alight from your transport at the O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women's Tower at KKH, and our staff will assist to wheel you to the Delivery Suite.


Should you require urgent medical assessment or assistance, you may visit KKH’s O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women’s Tower, KKH.


Read more about Labour and Delivery and other topics relating to pregnancy on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/PregnancyDuringLabourDelivery.aspx.


Menopause


I am 52 years old and have been experiencing hot flushes, night sweats with irregular periods. Are these symptoms of menopause? Should I see a gynaecologist?


A woman's body undergoes a gradual biological process which leads eventually to the end of her menstruation, or menopause. Each woman experiences menopause differently. Some may experience the following symptoms:

  • Irregular periods
  • Hot flushes and night sweats
  • Poor sleep
  • Aches, weakness and stiffness in muscles
  • Weight gain
  • Gas and constipation
  • Psychological changes
  • Vaginal/urinary tract changes
  • Skin and hair changes

Consult a gynaecologist on the symptoms you are experiencing, which might require treatment. Should you require urgent medical assessment or assistance, you may visit KKH’s O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women’s Tower, KKH.


Read more about Menopause and how some of its effects and symptoms can be managed on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/Menopause.aspx.

Pregnancy Discomforts


I am 6 weeks pregnant and have been vomiting and suffering from with heartburn. Should I see a doctor?


During pregnancy, the physical and hormonal changes in your body can cause some discomfort.


If your vomiting persists and/or is severe, you may wish to see your doctor, who would be able to prescribe some medications, if necessary.


Should you require urgent medical assessment or assistance, you may visit KKH’s O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women’s Tower, KKH.


Read more about how you can relieve such discomfort by managing your diet and fluid intake on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/PregnancyDuringDiscomforts.aspx.





I am pregnant and am experiencing a sharp pain on the side of my tummy. Should I see a doctor?


I am pregnant and am experiencing an intense pain around the lower abdomen and/or pelvic region. Should I go to the hospital now?


I am 6 weeks pregnant and have been experiencing slight cramps, accompanied with a brown vaginal discharge for the last two days. Do I need to see a gynaecologist?


I have missed my menses for two weeks. Today, I passed out a piece of tissue that looks like a blood clot. Should I go to the hospital?


Most expectant mothers will have an uneventful pregnancy and a smooth delivery. However, unexpected problems can arise in some, and these are often unpredictable.


Consult your doctor if you experience discomfort and/or pain in the abdomen or pelvic region.


If discomfort and/or pain is severe, or there is increased vaginal discharge, come to KKH’s O&G (24-hour) Clinic for a more detailed examination.


Read more on Care During Pregnancy and other topics relating to pregnancy on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/PregnancyDuringCare.aspx.



Pregnancy – Fetal Movement


I am pregnant, and I feel that my baby is not moving as much as before. Should I go to the hospital?


You must record the number of times your baby makes any movement in a day.


You must report to the hospital if:

  • your baby has made less than 10 movements per day for two consecutive days.
  • you experience a significant decrease in fetal movement over the last 24 hours.
  • you have noticed a sudden cessation of fetal movement over the last 12 hours.

Read more about monitoring your baby's Fetal Movement on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/PregnancyDuringCountToTenFetalMovementChart.aspx.


Pregnancy – Medication


I am currently pregnant. Is it safe for me to consume medication?

During pregnancy, it is advisable to discuss the safety and risks associated with any medication you plan to take, with your family doctor or obstetrician.


Read more about Care During Pregnancy and other pregnancy-related tips and advice on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/PregnancyDuringCare.aspx.

Urinary Tract Infection


I am passing blood-stained urine and experiencing pain. Is this a sign of an infection?


Urinary tract infection or UTI occurs when bacteria is present within the urinary tract in significant numbers.


Consult a doctor if you experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Passing urine more frequently than normal
  • "Burning" pain on passing urine
  • The urge to pass urine quickly
  • The urine is blood-stained, cloudy or smells foul
  • Pain in the lower abdominal or loin area
  • Fever

Should you require urgent medical assessment or assistance, you may visit KKH’s O&G (24-hour) Clinic, located at Basement 1, Women’s Tower, KKH.


Read more about UTI, its causes, symptoms and treatment, on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/FemaleUrinaryDisordersUrinaryTractInfection.aspx.

Quick Answers to common health concerns in children

Abdominal Symptoms

My child is vomiting, has diarrhoea and abdominal pain. Should I bring my child to see a doctor?


Consult your family doctor, especially if your child’s pain, vomiting or diarrhoea worsen over 12 to 24 hours.


Read more about the possible causes of Abdominal Pain in children, and our recommendations on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesAbdominalPain.aspx.



Antibiotics

My child has a fever, cough and cold. Does my child require antibiotics?


Antibiotics are only useful for bacterial infections. If your child has a common viral infection, he/she will usually recover over several days. Medication for symptomatic relief may be prescribed.


Consult a doctor if your child’s fever is high (38.5°C or above), and if the cough and cold worsen.


Read more about Antibiotics and their use on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesAntibiotics.aspx.



Asthma

My child has a cough, wheezing and shortness of breath. Does my child have asthma?


Asthma is a condition in which there is chronic inflammation of the airways. Consult your family doctor if your child is wheezing and has shortness of breath, for an assessment and appropriate medication.


Read more about Asthma in children, its symptoms, triggers and management, on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesAsthma.aspx.

Common Coughs & Colds

My child has a cough and cold. Should I bring him/her to see doctor?


Consult your doctor if your child exhibits the following signs or symptoms :

  • Fever (38.5ºC or above)
  • Fever persists for 2 days, or subsides and returns a few days later
  • Tugging at ear
  • Rash
  • Earache or difficulty in hearing
  • Thick greenish-yellow nasal mucus
  • Persistent cough for one week despite medication
  • Cough worsens in intensity and frequency
  • Blood in sputum or stool

Seek medical advice immediately if your child:

  • has difficulty in breathing or breathes rapidly
  • suffers seizures
  • is irritable or lethargic
  • complains of a stiff neck

These may indicate that your child is suffering from an infection or a more severe form of the illness.


Read more about Common Coughs and Colds in children and Bronchiolitis in infants on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesCoughsColds.aspx and http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesBronchiolitis.aspx.


Convulsion (Seizure)

My child had a seizure a short while ago. Must I bring him to Children’s Emergency?


During a convulsion (seizure), a child becomes unconscious and falls, the eyes roll backwards, the body stiffens, and the arms and legs jerk. Most seizures last less than 5 minutes.


Bring your child to a children’s emergency clinic* if it is the first time your child has had a seizure lasting longer than 5 minutes, or if your child appears confused and drowsy, or if another seizure occurs within the same day. If the seizure lasts more than 10 minutes, you should call an ambulance immediately.


Read more about Convulsions Without Fever in children on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesConvulsion.aspx.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)


Crying

My baby cries excessively and nothing seems to pacify him/her. What should I do?


Read about the possible reasons why babies cry and some advised remedies on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesCrying.aspx.


See if you can identify the reason(s) behind your baby’s crying, and try to address those as advised at the above link. If you think your baby is crying excessively because of colic, do bring him/her to see a doctor.

Diarrhoea

My baby has passed loose watery stools 6 times today. Should I bring my baby to see a doctor?


Diarrhoea refers to the frequent passage of loose watery stools due to an infection of the intestines. The infection may or may not be accompanied by vomiting, fever and abdominal pain.


Consult your family doctor if your child continues to pass loose watery stools and is not feeding well.


Read more about Diarrhoea in children on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesDiarrhoea.aspx.

Eczema

My child has rashes on the body, which cause itching. What cream can I apply?

Atopic dermatitis, or atopic eczema, is a very common recurrent, itchy skin condition in children. Often, this condition is accompanied by dry skin which is easily irritated.


Consult a doctor, so that the most appropriate medication can be prescribed depending on the severity of the rashes.


Most children with atopic dermatitis improve as they get older. However, the condition can also recur after an inactive period.


Read more about Atopic Dermatitis / Atopic Eczema in children on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesEczema.aspx.

Fever

My child has fever, with a temperature of 38.5°C. I have Panadol (Paracetamol) syrup with me. Can I give it to my child? What is the recommended dosage?


If I also have Brufen (Ibuprofen), may I give that to my child as well? What is the dosage and interval for both, Panadol and Brufen?


If your baby’s fever is 38.5°C or above, you may feed him/her Panadol (Paracetamol) syrup every 6 hourly. If fever persists bring your child to see a doctor.


If you would like to give your child Brufen (Ibuprofen), please check the medication label and follow the instructions for the right interval and dosage.


Consult a doctor if your child:

  • is feeding poorly, vomiting or lethargic
  • is very young, especially less than 3 months old
  • has difficulty breathing
  • is drowsy
  • looks more sickly than is usual
  • has abdominal pain and discomfort
  • has rash
  • has decreased urine output

Read more about Fever in children, and other ways of managing it on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesFever.aspx.


My child had fever for 2 days which has subsided. Rashes are now appearing all over his body.


Observe the rashes over a day or two. Consult a doctor if it worsens.

Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease

My child has fever, mouth ulcers and blisters on her palms. Is this Hand, Foot & Mouth Disease (HFMD)?


Children with HFMD will have blister-like or pimple-like rash on their hands, feet and/or buttocks, mouth ulcers and fever. In addition, the child may have a sore throat, runny nose, vomiting and diarrhoea, and may feel tired.


Consult a doctor at a polyclinic or your family doctor. The doctor may prescribe fever medication to control your child’s fever. Encourage your child to take more fluids like diluted juices, rice or barley water to prevent dehydration.


Bring your child to a children’s emergency clinic* if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Poor oral intake of fluids or inability to swallow
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Dry tongue or decreased urine output, as these may indicate dehydration
  • Lethargy, drowsiness or irritability; persistent crying or disorientation
  • Seizures
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Ashen, pale or blue appearance
  • Acute headache, giddiness, or stiff neck

Read more about HFMD in children, and measures to prevent and manage it on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesHFMD.aspx.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)



Home Injuries/Accidents

My child has swallowed some medicated balm/oil. Must I bring my child to Children’s Emergency?

Consult a doctor if your child has vomiting, abdominal pain or has ingested a lot of the medicated balm/oil.


Read more about Injuries and Accidental Poisoning in children, and first aid measures on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesInjuries.aspx.


My infant fell from the bed. Must I bring him/her to Children’s Emergency?


My child fell backwards and hit his/her head on the floor. A slight scratch can be seen at the back of his/her head. Should I bring my child to Children’s Emergency?


My child hit his face against a hard surface while running. Do I need to have him/her checked by a doctor?


Most head injuries do not cause complications but sometimes children may sustain skull fractures and internal brain injuries which can potentially be serious.


Consult a doctor if your child sustains a head injury.

Bring your child to a children’s emergency clinic* if any of the following symptoms are observed within 72 hours from the injury/accident:

  • Persistent vomiting
  • Unusual drowsiness
  • Bleeding from ear or nose
  • Any signs of injury on other parts of the body
  • Inability or difficulty waking from sleep

Read more about Injuries in children and first aid measures on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesInjuries.aspx.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)

Jaundice

My baby is a few days old and appears yellow. Is this jaundice? Where should I bring him/her for a medical assessment?


Jaundice is the yellow tone of the skin that occurs in many newborn babies. It occurs when a chemical called bilirubin builds up in the baby's blood. It can occur in babies of any race.


Bring your baby to a polyclinic for a serum bilirubin blood test. If the bilirubin level is high, your baby may need to be admitted in a hospital for phototherapy, or may continue to be monitored by the polyclinic doctor.


Read more about jaundice in babies on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesJaundice.aspx.

Medication

One of my children visited the Children’s Emergency at KKH yesterday and was prescribed some medication. Now my other child has the same symptoms. Can I give him/her the same medicine as well?


Sharing of medicines with others is not recommended even if the symptoms appear similar, as the underlying condition and severity may differ. Visit a polyclinic or consult your family doctor for an appropriate assessment and prescription. Bring your child to a children's emergency clinic* if he/she requires urgent medical attention.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)


My child was given a higher dose of a medication than what was prescribed. Should I bring my child to Children’s Emergency?


Bring your child to a children’s emergency clinic* without delay, for an assessment and appropriate intervention, if necessary.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)


My son was given medication for fever and cough. After having the medicines for two days, he has developed a rash on his body. Is this a drug allergy?


A rash may be triggered by many causes. Observe the rash and consult a doctor if it worsens. Bring your child to a children's emergency clinic* if he/she requires urgent medical attention.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)


My family doctor had prescribed medicines to address my child’s high fever. It has been four days since he has been on that medication, and his fever continues to be high. Should I bring him to Children's Emergency?


Bring your child to consult a doctor at a children’s emergency clinic* if despite medication, your child:

  • has fever, with a temperature of 38.5 °C or above
  • is feeding poorly, vomiting or lethargic
  • is very young, especially if younger than 3 months
  • has difficulty in breathing
  • is drowsy
  • looks more sickly than is usual
  • has abdominal pain and discomfort
  • has rash
  • has decreased urine output

Read more about Fever in children, and other ways of managing it on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesFever.aspx.


(*KKH’s Children’s Emergency is open 24 hours)



I will be travelling overseas with my two children, aged 3 years and 6 years. What medicines should I have as standby for them?

The recommendation for medicines and precautions may vary depending upon your destination. It is advisable to consult a doctor or pharmacist for the most appropriate advice in this regard.


Read more about travelling with your child on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesTravelling.aspx.


Nose Bleeds

My child’s nose has been bleeding. Should I bring him/her to see a doctor?


Nose bleeds are common in children and are usually not a serious condition.


When there is a nose bleed:

  • Sit the child up and lean him/her forward to prevent swallowing of blood
  • Pinch the tip of the nose
  • Do NOT insert tissues or gauze into the nose

Consult a doctor if your child’s nose-bleed persists for longer than 15 minutes, becomes more frequent, or is difficult to stop.


Read more about Nose Bleeds in children on KKH HealthPedia at http://www.kkh.com.sg/HealthPedia/Pages/ChildhoodIllnessesNose.aspx.