Petechiae in Children
Petechiae are small red or purple spots that appear on the body and are caused by a minor hemorrhage. The commonest cause of these Petechiae is the result of physical trauma like a particularly hard bout of vomiting, crying or coughing. This can result in what are known as facial petechiae which occur particularly around the eyes. Petechiae are in this instance totally harmless and usually tend to disappear in a few days. Petechiae can be a sign of low platelet counts or thrombocytopenia. This occurs when the platelet function gets inhibited. This is normally a side effect of medicines or caused by certain infections. They also tend to occur when pressure is applied in excess to any tissue like the case when a tourniquet is tied to an extremity. Some other malignancies can also be the cause of petechiae occurring. Dermatologists are the most adept specialists to treat these conditions as they can identify them easily and correctly and also differentiate between petechiae and some other similar looking rash. They can also be identified as vasculitis which is an inflammation of the blood vessels. This needs to be immediately treated to avoid any permanent damage occurring. The seriousness of petechiae in children and infants depends on the clinical context. Children suffering from viral infections tend to be more susceptible to petechiae. In this case it does not qualify as a serious illness. However there are illnesses like meningococcemia, certain causes of thrombocytopenia and leukemia that they are a signal of. Hence at no times can they be ignored.
Treatment for Petechiae
Treatment for petechiae is aimed at the underlying cause of the disease. Somebody who is suffering from petechiae that has been caused by an infection will accordingly be treated with antibiotics. If petechiae has been caused by an allergic reaction to a particular kind of medicine, then the obvious remedy is to stop administering or ingesting that drug or medicine. If petechia has occurred due to low platelet count then the treatment involves giving a transfusion of the blood factors or platelets. Patients who are suffering from cancer or leukemia may need to be treated with radiation therapy or chemotherapy. Petechia that has been caused by a particular injury does not need any treatment. At times application of an ice pack sporadically on and off during the course of the day can help reduce the petechiae. Eventually the petechiae will fade and disappear in time. Hence most petechiae will disappear once the cause of it appearance has been identified and subsequently treated.