Why an X-ray for Childhood Constipation Can Seem Like a Rorsach Test

The other day I reviewed the abdominal x-ray of an 11-year-old boy with persistent bedwetting. The boy’s rectum was jam packed with stool, and the mass extended upward to his belly button like a column of poop. I told his mom: “This is one of the more impacted x-rays I have seen in a while. The mass of poop in the rectum is significant.” Yet the radiologist’s report on the x-ray, which was taken at a pediatrician’s office, found only a “moderate amount of stool in the colon.” This kind of discrepancy happens all the time. A radiologist will pronounce a child’s x-ray “normal” or the stool burden “moderate,” and on this basis, the pediatrician will tell the family that no treatment is warrante

Schooling First-Grade Teachers on Children's Bladder Health

Should students get to use school restrooms whenever they want? Not according to a team of first-grade teachers in Las Vegas, who last week told parents in a letter: “Students are wasting valuable learning time on bathroom breaks.” The teachers asserted that “healthy first graders urinate one or two times during the school day” and pleaded with parents them to help their children “increase bladder endurance." They recommended parents have kids “wait 10-15 minutes from their first urge and increase the wait time by 5 minutes per day” until the child can go 2 hours without peeing. After the letter went viral, the principal did a quick and admirable job of calming outraged parents. She assured

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