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Go Ask Mom

Duke Medicine: When children faint

Posted October 10, 2011 8:16 p.m. EDT

When a child or teen faints, especially at school and in the presence of peers, it is often very upsetting to other children and can be a source of great embarrassment to the child who has fainted.

There are many causes of syncope -- the medical term for fainting -- in the young, and happily, most do not represent a life-threatening condition.

But less common -- and far more dangerous -- conditions may first show themselves as syncope. Because of this, children who have fainted need to be seen by a health care professional to rule out serious causes and to recommend therapy to limit or eliminate further fainting events.

Read more about what might cause a child to faint in the full post by Dr. Ronald J. Kanter, an associate professor of pediatrics and director of pediatric electrophysiology at Duke Medicine. His team takes care of infants, children, teenagers, and young adults who have or potentially have abnormal heart rhythms, pacemakers, or automatic defibrillators.