Act Your Age is a third season episode of House which first aired on April 17, 2007 in the United States.
While an 8 year old boy, Jasper is being treated by his father for a severe nosebleed at a post-school day care, his 6 year old sister, Lucy falls unconscious and is rushed to Princeton-Plainsboro. Although House feels the diagnosis of the daughter will be rather routine, he agrees to take on the case when Cuddy tells him the standard diagnoses haven't been correct.
Since House wants nothing more than to go home, he orders his team to run a lot of routine tests. The team goes to see an operation being carried out on the patient while they argue about the diagnosis. Chase goes home too while Foreman and Cameron run the tests, all of which are negative. However, Chase comes in first thing the following morning with a positive test result - the girl is suffering from a fungal infection. House orders them to biopsy a lymph node to find out which fungus.
As Chase and Cameron treat the patient, her brother develops a crush on Cameron. All of a sudden, they realize the patient has double vision. However, the biopsy was negative so it wasn't a fungus. House thinks it might be juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. However, as they explain the disease to the father, the patient starts having a stroke.
The stroke was caused by a clot. House is mystified - her symptoms are those of an old woman. He orders an environmental scan for cigarettes and carbon monoxide. On their way, the patient's brother tries to give Cameron stolen flowers. Cameron gives him a kiss.
They start draining the patient's blood to keep it from clotting. Cameron and Chase arrive at the girl's home to see if the girl's illness may have an environmental cause. They argue about whether Cameron is trying to make Chase jealous. She denies it. Chase discovers that the brother is having discipline problems at school. While there, they discover a bloody undershirt in a vent in the patient's bedroom. Chase reminds Cameron she broke it off. She reminds him he broke the rules by falling in love.
Cameron surmises that the child may be sexually or physically abused, but Foreman notes there are no signs on her body. Cameron thinks it is sexual. House orders a full physical exam, but Chase points out they can't do a vaginal exam without the father's consent. Foreman asks the father straight out if he's abusing his daughter, but he denies it and Foreman gets consent after threatening to call social services. Cameron performs the exam and finds cuts all over her vaginal area. However, there is no sign of vaginal tearing.
When Cuddy finds out House has not yet contacted child services for suspecting child abuse, she once again chides House for not following proper procedure. She tells him to call social services.
House finds out that Wilson took Cuddy to the play with his tickets. He thinks Wilson is trying to sleep with her. Wilson says they are just friends. He then plays with House's mind by claiming he slept with Cuddy.
Tests on the shirt come back and show that it is menstrual blood - although the patient is only 6 years old, she has entered puberty. Cameron explains to the father that her hormone levels are too high and they have to find the source. The cuts on her vagina were from her attempt to shave off her pubic hair. The team gets together to decide what the source is. Cameron thinks it is environmental, but House thinks she has a hormone-producing tumor.
Chase and Foreman perform an MRI on the patient. They discuss Cameron breaking up with Chase. They find a bright spot on her ovaries.
The patient's brother confronts Cameron about Chase, and then corners her, asking her to be his girlfriend. When Cameron resists, the boy grabs her behind.
They operate to remove the tumor on her ovary, but she goes into cardiac arrest from an arrhythmia. They find the "tumor" is just a benign cyst. Cameron feels it has to be an environmental source.
The patient's brother sees Chase talking sweetly to Cameron and being tender to her, and goes into a rage and bites Chase. When they report the biting incident to House, he first brushes it off and goes back to watching professional wrestling on television. However, seconds later he calls Cameron back with to tell her that the girl's early puberty and the boy's aggressiveness are probably from the same common disorder.
The brother's testosterone test is much higher than normal. The question then becomes what the source of the hormones are. Chase pointed out the mother died of a tumor. Since they are siblings, a genetic cause is considered. They start doing tests on the brother as well. Suddenly the sister's stomach starts to hurt - she has a cyst on her pancreas. It could be environmental, but she's getting worse even though she's not in her environment. Cameron thinks the sister needs to have her pituitary gland removed. However, she would need hormone treatment for the rest of her life. The father consents to the surgery. At this point House wonders if it could be an environmental source, and suspects the day care center. However, the father rejects this suggestion, saying if any other children there had the same symptoms, he would know about it.
House visits the day care and, after asking one of the girls there if she's "growing hair in her special place", realizes that the father is having an affair with the day care supervisor. She denies being to the patients' house but House realizes that she has recently had a lip wax. House quickly surmises that she had been exposed to testosterone, and that the source has to be the father. He returns to the hospital and confronts the father about whether he has been using testosterone cream to keep up with the much younger supervisor. He confirms it, and admits he had no prescription, but can't understand how his use of the cream would affect his children. House explains that like most other things, testosterone is taken out of the body through sweat, and that his children were exposed every time he touched them, even in the hospital. He agrees to stop using it.
After Cameron informs Chase that they are no longer going to have a sexual relationship, Chase confronts Cameron and asks her to admit she may have feelings for him. Chase makes it clear that he cares for Cameron and wants a relationship with her.
Wilson has recently taken Cuddy to a play. House confronts Wilson about this and intimates that Wilson is interested in a relationship with Cuddy, which Wilson denies. However, Wilson receives flowers with a card from Cuddy which seem to indicate that Cuddy is very interested in a relationship with Wilson. He goes to House's office and states he is going to just go into Cuddy's office, kiss her, and tell her how he feels about her. After leaving House, he returns a moment later to let House know he knew all along that House sent the flowers and he couldn't believe that House would let him humiliate himself like that. However he instantly gets back at House by claiming he is interested in Cuddy. House buys it just long enough for Wilson to say that he was kidding.
At the end of the episode, House mentions to Cuddy that he has two tickets for a play.
The patient is urinating a lot, has aches, and has trouble concentrating. However, he refuses to provide a urine sample because he is bladder shy. He offers to go home to get a sample.
House gets the test results, but knows it isn't the patient's urine. He figures the patient is mimicking the symptoms for someone without insurance - otherwise, he's pregnant.
- Chase and Cameron have their first fight since breaking up.
- Jasper, the patient's brother develops a crush on Cameron.
- House learns that Wilson and Cuddy went to a play together.
- Wilson thinks that Cuddy has sent him flowers but it's soon revealed that it was actually House.
- After hearing that Jasper attacked Chase in a jealous rage, House figures out that he probably has the same disease as his sister, Lucy.
- Wilson eventually figures out that House sent him the flowers. But he gets his own-back by managing to fool House into thinking that he likes Cuddy.
- House asks Cuddy to a play.
Act Your Age