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3 year old having frequent swellings inside the mouth with low energy levels. Taking Movicol for constipation

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Practicing since : 1982
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3 year old grandson (almost 4yrs) gets swollen cheeks (inside mouth) at intermittent times. They come up like golf balls which then cause him to bite his cheeks (only when swollen). When his cheeks are swollen he becomes very pale, energy levels decrease, and he can then become quite irritable. He may also soil his pants instead of using the toilet as he normally would. He also often has constipation, unless given Movicol which has been ordered by his doctor, when he may then get diarrhoea. I would appreciate any help we can get as no-one seems to have any answers.
Posted Mon, 21 May 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Taher Kagalwala 11 hours later
Dear friend,

Thank you for addressing your query at Health Care Magic. I am Dr. Taher from India, and I will try and answer your concerns to the best of my ability.

First of all, it is not clear to me whether we are talking of a cheek swelling from within the mouth (i,e, XXXXXXX swelling causing the cheek to look swollen from outside) or an external swelling that enlarges the cheek from outside without in any way affecting the XXXXXXX lining of the mouth or causing any disturbances of digestion or speech. Also, it is not very clear if the swelling is at the back of the cheek in close connection with the angle of the jaw and beneath the ear, so that it also pushes the ear out and up, or whether it is near the front of the cheek and so distorts the mouth and affects the speech, articulation and eating. I would also appreciate if you told me whether there is any fever, if he has redness in his mouth, especially in the groove between the inside of his cheeks and the teeth of the upper jaw, and whether the swelling is painful or not.

The answers to these questions will enable me to give you a more cogent and helpful reply.

Coming to the other problem of alternating diarrhoea and constipation, I think this is connected to the use/abuse of the medication that has been prescribed to him. Has the doctor ordered any tests like testing of the stool, an X-ray of his tummy, an ultrasound or any other? Does the child suffer from a problem where he actually tries to suppress his natural urge to go the toilet and keep "it in"? These problems are related to his mental mal-adjustment and may need counselling. I don't think he has any medical problem as far as his stooling habit is concerned.

Kindly revert to me with the answers to the queries raised by me. If you have ever taken a photo of your grandson when he had the swelling, do send it to me as a "Report" attached to this question, and I will see what I can do.

Thank you once again, and with best wishes,

Dr. Taher Kagalwala
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