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Down Syndrome - When To Call a Doctor

Call a doctor immediately if:

  • Your baby or very young child with Down syndrome shows signs of:
    • Intestinal blockage, such as severe belly pain, vomiting, and possibly swelling of the stomach.
    • Heart problems, such as bluish discoloration of the lips and fingers, difficulty breathing, or a sudden change in eating or activity level.
  • A person of any age with Down syndrome shows symptoms of dislocated neck bones. This condition often occurs after an injury. Symptoms may include:
    • Neck pain.
    • Limited neck movement.
    • Weakness in the arms and legs.
    • Difficulty walking.
    • A change in bowel or bladder control.

Call a doctor if a person with Down syndrome:

  • Acts differently or stops doing things that he or she used to. These may be a sign of pain or an illness.
  • Shows signs of mental health issues, such as anxiety or depression. Depression may be triggered by a big change or loss, such as the death of a family member or a change in a caregiver.

Who to see

The following health professionals can diagnose and/or treat a person who has Down syndrome:

Other specialists will be needed, such as:

Your child may need to see other specialists if he or she has any complications.

To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: July 01, 2013
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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