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Branch of medicine that treats individuals from birth to the age of 18 (babies, newborns, children and adolescents).
Origin of the word pediatrics
From the Greek country, paidós, «child» + iatreía, «medicine»
In the past, pediatrics did not exist as a medical discipline, as children's health was the responsibility of their mothers and midwives / obstetricians. From the Renaissance onwards, children's diseases began to be considered a medical specialty and, more recently, in the 19th century, pediatrics became a scientific branch. Pediatrics is a relatively new medical specialty, having taken its first steps only in the mid-19th century. Abraham Jacobi (1830-1919) is considered the father of pediatrics.
France and Germany were the first countries to develop modern pediatric knowledge and services. Children's hospitals were quick to reproduce in Europe and the United States, before spreading to other regions of the world.
What does the pediatrician do?
As a definition, the pediatrician is the doctor of a child who provides medical care, in acute or chronic situations, but also preventive health services for healthy children.
A pediatrician controls the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of children under his care at each stage of evolution, in illness and in health. Areas of development and behavior are covered.
Pediatricians diagnose and treat various conditions of the child, including:
Pediatrics is dedicated to the sick child, with its long-term effects on quality of life, disability and survival (health education / promoting healthy lifestyles). Pediatricians are involved with prevention, timely detection, and management of problems including:
There are several specialties within pediatrics, such as pediatric dentistry (oral health). Hebrew medicine, for example, is the branch specialized in adolescent diseases and in different psychological (anxiety and the like) and social disorders that can affect health during puberty.
The main difference between the practice of pediatric and adult medicine is that children, in most jurisdictions and with some exceptions, cannot make decisions for themselves. The issues of guardianship, privacy, legal responsibility and informed consent must always be considered in each pediatric procedure. Pediatricians often have to treat parents and sometimes the family, and not just the child. Adolescents already have rights to their health decisions in certain circumstances. The concept of legal consent combined with the child's non-legal consent (favorable opinion) when considering treatment options, especially in the face of conditions with poor prognosis or complicated and painful procedures / surgery. The significance of this is that the pediatrician must consider the opinions of others, in addition to the patient's opinion.
The pediatrician is trained with the medical course first. Then they do specialization.
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