General medical conditions

Use the search box to learn about general medical conditions that affect children and young people.

Click here for information about specialist medical conditions, which are treated at Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Warts

A wart is a common type of skin growth that can occur singly or in clusters. They are most common on the hands, but can develop elsewhere on the body such as the feet. Warts are not usually painful, unless they are on the soles of the feet. They are contagious however, so can spread to other parts of the body or even to other people.

Anaemia

Anaemia is a very common condition where the number of red blood cells or the amount of haemoglobin in red blood cells is less than normal. Iron deficiency anaemia is a specific type of anaemia caused by a lack of the mineral iron in the body. Iron is important in the formation of haemoglobin so a reduced iron level causes a reduced haemoglobin level in the blood.

Stye

A stye (hordoleum) is an inflamed area of the eyelid, either at the base of an eyelash (external hordoleum) or on the inside surface of the eyelid (internal hordoleum). Styes are more common in children than adults.

Chalazion

A chalazion is a cyst (swollen area of tissue filled with fluid) that develops on the eyelid. The cyst is not usually painful, but can take a while to go down. Only very large chalazions can affect vision, by pressing on the eye.

Food intolerance 

Food intolerance is a type of food hypersensitivity that is very different to food allergy. Food allergy and food intolerance are often confused. A food allergy provokes a response from the immune system, but food intolerance does not. 

Pectus carinatum

This information from Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) is about pectus carinatum (also known as pigeon chest). Pectus carinatum is a condition in which, instead of being level with the ribs, the breastbone (sternum) is ‘pushed out’ so that the middle of the chest is more pronounced. There may also be areas where the rib cage is depressed or ‘pushed inwards’.

Meningitis

Meningitis is an infection that affects the meninges – the tissue covering the brain and spinal cord. This information sheet from Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) explains the causes, symptoms and treatment of meningitis and where to get help.