All Diseases

Diaper rash is a common form of inflamed skin (dermatitis) that appears as a patchwork of bright red skin on your baby's bottom.

Diaper rash is commonly linked to continuously wet or infrequently changed diapers, diarrhea, and using plastic pants to cover diapers. Diaper rash also may develop after solid foods are added to your baby's diet, when breast-feeding mothers eat certain foods or when your baby is taking antibiotics.

Diaper rash can alarm parents and annoy babies, but most diaper rash cases can be resolved with simple at-home treatments.

Diarrhea describes loose, watery stools that occur more frequently than usual. Diarrhea is something everyone experiences. Diarrhea often means more-frequent trips to the toilet and a greater volume of stool.

In most cases, diarrhea signs and symptoms usually last a couple of days. But sometimes diarrhea can last for weeks. In these situations, diarrhea can be a sign of a serious disorder, such as inflammatory bowel disease, or a less serious condition, such as irritable bowel syndrome.

Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH) is calcification or a bony hardening of ligaments in areas where they attach to your spine.

Also known as Forestier's disease, diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis may cause no symptoms and require no treatment. The most common symptoms are mild to moderate pain and stiffness in your upper back. DISH may also affect your neck and lower back. Some people experience DISH in other areas, such as shoulders, elbows, knees and heels.

DISH can be progressive. As it worsens, DISH can cause serious complications.

DiGeorge syndrome, also called 22q11.2 deletion syndrome, is a disorder caused by a defect in chromosome 22. It results in the poor development of several body systems.

Medical problems commonly associated with DiGeorge syndrome include heart defects, poor immune system function, a cleft palate, complications related to low levels of calcium in the blood, and delayed development with behavioral and emotional problems.

The number and severity of symptoms associated with DiGeorge syndrome vary greatly. However, almost everyone with DiGeorge syndrome needs treatment from specialists in a variety of fields.

Before the discovery of the chromosome 22 defect, the disorder was known by several names — DiGeorge syndrome, velocardiofacial syndrome, Shprintzen syndrome, CATCH22 and others. Although the term "22q11.2 deletion syndrome" is frequently used today — and is generally a more accurate description — previous names for the disorder are still used.

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a disease of the heart muscle, usually starting in your heart's main pumping chamber (left ventricle). The ventricle stretches and thins (dilates) and can't pump blood as well as a healthy heart can. The term "cardiomyopathy" is a general term that refers to the abnormality of the heart muscle itself.

Dilated cardiomyopathy might not cause symptoms, but for some people it can be life-threatening. A common cause of heart failure — the heart's inability to supply the body with enough blood — dilated cardiomyopathy can also contribute to irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias), blood clots or sudden death.

The condition affects people of all ages, including infants and children, but is most common in men ages 20 to 60.

Diphtheria (dif-THEER-e-uh) is a serious bacterial infection usually affecting the mucous membranes of your nose and throat. Diphtheria typically causes a sore throat, fever, swollen glands and weakness. But the hallmark sign is a sheet of thick, gray material covering the back of your throat, which can block your airway, causing you to struggle for breath.

Diphtheria is extremely rare in the United States and other developed countries, thanks to widespread vaccination against the disease.

Medications are available to treat diphtheria. However, in advanced stages, diphtheria can damage your heart, kidneys and nervous system. Even with treatment, diphtheria can be deadly — up to 3 percent of people who get diphtheria die of it. The rate is higher for children under 15.

A dislocated elbow occurs when the bones that make up the joint are forced out of alignment — typically when a person lands on an outstretched hand during a fall.

Toddlers may experience a dislocated elbow, sometimes known as nursemaid's elbow, if they are lifted or swung by their forearms.

If you or your child has a dislocated elbow, seek immediate medical attention. Complications can occur if the dislocated elbow pinches or traps the blood vessels and nerves that serve the lower arm and hand.

In most cases, a dislocated elbow can be realigned without surgery. However, the impact that caused the elbow to dislocate also can cause bone fractures within the joint, so surgical repair may be necessary.

A dislocated shoulder is an injury in which your upper arm bone pops out of the cup-shaped socket that's part of your shoulder blade. The shoulder is the body's most mobile joint, which makes it susceptible to dislocation.

If you suspect a dislocated shoulder, seek prompt medical attention. Most people regain full shoulder function within a few weeks. However, once you've had a dislocated shoulder, your joint may become unstable and be prone to repeat dislocations.

A dislocation is an injury to a joint — a place where two or more of your bones come together — in which the ends of your bones are forced from their normal positions. This painful injury temporarily deforms and immobilizes your joint.

Dislocation is most common in the shoulders and fingers. Other sites for dislocations include the elbows, knees and hips. If you suspect a dislocation, seek prompt medical attention to return your bones to their proper positions.

When treated properly, most dislocations return to normal function after several weeks of rest and rehabilitation. However, some joints, such as your shoulder, may have an increased risk of repeat dislocation.

Someone with a dissociative disorder escapes reality in ways that are involuntary and unhealthy. The person with a dissociative disorder experiences a disconnection and lack of continuity between thoughts, memories, surroundings, actions and identity.

The symptoms of dissociative disorders — ranging from amnesia to alternate identities — depend in part on the type you have. Symptoms usually develop as a reaction to trauma and help keep difficult memories at bay. Times of stress can temporarily worsen symptoms, making them more obvious. Dissociative disorders cause problems with functioning in everyday life.

Treatment for dissociative disorders may include talk therapy (psychotherapy) and medication. Although treating dissociative disorders can be difficult, many people learn new ways of coping and lead healthy, productive lives.