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Doctor insights on: Bulging Fontanel

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Dr. Michael Gabor
11 doctors shared insights

Bulging Fontanel (Overview)

A bulging fontanelle (soft spot on baby's head) is most likely due to increased intracranial pressure. This may be due to a number of factors, including head bleeds, an intracranial mass, or a defect in cerebral spinal fluid production/flow. It is a "safety valve" for babies, and it lets physicians know that a work-up needs to be performed quickly to determine the cause.


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What can cause bulging fontanel except meningitis?

What can cause bulging fontanel except meningitis?

Meningitis: Anything causing an increase in the pressure within the skull, such as swelling of the brain, can cause bulging fontanels in infants. ...Read more

Dr. Michael Gabor
11 doctors shared insights

Bulging Fontanel (Overview)

A bulging fontanelle (soft spot on baby's head) is most likely due to increased intracranial pressure. This may be due to a number of factors, including head bleeds, an intracranial mass, or a defect in cerebral spinal fluid production/flow. It is a "safety valve" for babies, and it lets physicians know that a work-up needs to be performed quickly to determine the cause.


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Does the presence of a bulging fontanel (soft spot) mean that my baby has meningitis?

Possibly, but...: A bulging fontanel is associated with meningitis. But babies with meningitis have other issues, which may include fevers, poor feeding, lethargy. And bulging fontanel is not only caused by meningitis either. Please see your child's pediatrician if you are concerned. ...Read more

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Treating Head Lice (Checklist)

Treat all household members with nix permethrin with dr approval
15 Min, Weekly for 2 Weeks
Check every person with lice for nits (eggs) every day
5 Min, Daily for 3 Weeks
Do a thorough cleaning of beds, sofas, and play areas. Do the laundry
Once
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What is the definition or description of: Bulging fontanel?

What is the definition or description of: Bulging fontanel?

Increased Pressure: A bulging fontanelle (soft spot on baby's head) is most likely due to increased intracranial pressure. This may be due to a number of factors, including head bleeds, an intracranial mass, or a defect in cerebral spinal fluid production/flow. It is a "safety valve" for babies, and it lets physicians know that a work-up needs to be performed quickly to determine the cause. ...Read more

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5
What can cause bulging fontanel except meningitis?

Meningitis: Anything causing an increase in the pressure within the skull, such as swelling of the brain, can cause bulging fontanels in infants. ...Read more

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6
Treating a Head Injury (Checklist)

Get help now
Once
Try not to diagnose yourself
Once
Don't drive a vehicle--have someone else drive you
Once
Ice the area, if you can
Once
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Does the presence of a bulging fontanel (soft spot) mean that my baby has meningitis?

Possibly, but...: A bulging fontanel is associated with meningitis. But babies with meningitis have other issues, which may include fevers, poor feeding, lethargy. And bulging fontanel is not only caused by meningitis either. Please see your child's pediatrician if you are concerned. ...Read more

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My 6 month old has a bulging fontanel. All tests (mri, CT scan, bloodwork, etc) have come back negative. What else should I push for. ?

My 6 month old has a bulging fontanel. All tests (mri, CT scan, bloodwork, etc) have come back negative. What else should I push for. ?

Depends: A bulging fontanel can be normal depending on the position the child is in when it is evaluated. A crying child who is lying down will almost always have a bulging fontanel. A bulge indicates an increase in pressure - either in the skull itself, or within the superior sagittal sinus (the giant vein which lies just beneath the fontanel). A spinal tap is warranted to check the intracranial pressure. ...Read more

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My 6 1/2 mo old ped. Felt his anterior fontanel but says that it might be closing early than usual. Should i be worried? Or is this normal @ his age?

My 6 1/2 mo old ped. Felt his anterior fontanel but says that it might be closing early than usual. Should i be worried? Or is this normal @ his age?

Follow closely..: It is a bit early for the skull to fuse, but unless he has had a head MRI or ct to assess exactly how open or closed they are, i would not panic. If his head shape is normal and symmetric, if head size is increasing along appropriate percentiles, development is normal, then i would put my mind at ease. However, these parameters, including head size and shape, need to be monitored monthly for now. ...Read more

Soft Spot On Top Of Head (Definition)

In an infant, the space where two skull-bone sutures join forms a membrane-covered "soft spot" called a fontanel (fontanelle). The fontanels allow for growth of the skull during an infant's first year. The fontanels should feel firm and very slightly curved inward to the touch. A tense or bulging fontanel occurs when fluid builds up in the skull cavity or when pressure increases in the brain (increased intracranial pressure). When the infant is crying, lying down, or vomiting, the fontanels may look like they are slightly bulging, but they should return to normal when the infant is in ...Read more


Soft Spot On Head Bulging (Definition)

Soft spot on head is bulging is a symptom in which the soft spot (fontanelle) on top of a baby's head is more firm than usual, and is pushing up the scalp (bulging) a small amount. A momentary bulging soft spot is due to increased pressure, such as when a baby pushes to poop or when a baby is crying. If a soft spot remains bulging, and there are other ill symptoms, the ...Read more