What Is Pediatric ENT
Pediatric ENT is specialized care for illnesses of the ear, neck and throat, specifically for children and adolescents, by a team of pediatric ENTs, also known as pediatric otolaryngology teams. These professionals specialize in treating common childhood illnesses such as chronic sinusitis and tonsillitis, otitis media (recurring ear infections), and other upper conditions of the ear, nose and throat according to the latest medical guidelines and using advanced surgical procedures when necessary.
ENTs also assess and treat more unusual disorders in children and adolescents which include:
– upper airway breathing problems;
– acquired or congenital neck and head masses;
– obstructive sleep apnoea;
– speech problems;
– congenital hearing loss
– obstructive and complicated airway problems.
– abnormal snoring
Sometimes children with diseases of the ear, nose and throat require specialized care when accompanied by other medical conditions such as heart disease, developmental disorders, asthma and other complicated disorders. Pediatric ontolaryngologists are skilled in caring for children with multiple complicating conditions.
ENT teams include the following specialists:
– speech therapists
– swallowing pathologists
Also included in ENT teams are other healthcare professionals involved in caring for children and adolescents with ear, nose and throat diseases. These professionals are highly skilled in dealing with the emotional needs of young patients and always encourage active participation from parents in all aspects of health care.
Physicians diagnose problems involving the ears, nose and throat quickly and accurately by using advanced techniques and diagnostic equipment. When a condition requires surgery, ENT specialists have access to state of the art equipment and tools such as the latest CT-guided equipment for surgery which improves the successful outcome of procedures on young patients.
TRAINING FOR PEDIATRIC ENTs
Pediatric otolaryngologists have chosen pediatric care as their core medical practice to treat children from new-born through to the teenage years. The unique nature of pediatric ENT requires learning from advanced training and acquiring practical experience in the medical and surgical care of young patients.
ENTs are medical doctors who have attained at least the following qualifications:
• 4 years at medical school
• 1 year surgical internship
• Usually 1 additional year in residency training for general surgery
• 3 to 4 additional years residency otolaryngology training including head and neck surgery
• Additional training in pediatric otolaryngology by completing fellowship programs at one of the larger children’s medical centers.
Should your child need complex medical treatment or surgery for ear, nose and throat illnesses, you can rest assured that a pediatric otolaryngologist will have the necessary qualifications and experience required for the successful treatment of ENT conditions. In many areas, however, more specialized ENT care for children will be available at specialized medical facilities and an ENT will be able to recommend such a facility if necessary.