Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Pediatrics for October 2008. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.
Gleevec Can Effectively Shrink Neurofibromas
FRIDAY, Oct. 31 (HealthDay News) -- For neurofibromas to develop in a mouse model of neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), the NF1 gene must be lost not only in Schwann cells but also in mast cells infiltrating the neurofibromas, according to a study in the Oct. 31 issue of Cell. Imatinib (Gleevec) could substantially reduce tumor size in a child with the disease.
Efforts to Alleviate Burden of Malaria Can Succeed
FRIDAY, Oct. 31 (HealthDay News) -- The burden of malaria has been largely alleviated in Gambia, but efforts to cut exposure to malaria transmission in Kenya showed that reductions in transmission intensity lead to a temporary increase in morbidity and mortality because of severe malaria, according to two studies published in the Nov. 1 issue of The Lancet.
Combination Therapy Effective for Kids' Anxiety Disorders
THURSDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- In children with anxiety disorders, a combination of cognitive behavioral therapy and antidepressant medication effectively treats symptoms, but each therapy alone also is associated with significant improvement, according to a study published online Oct. 30 in The New England Journal of Medicine.
Early Insulin Doesn't Help Very Low-Birth-Weight Infants
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Early use of insulin does not improve the outcome for very low-birth-weight infants, but aggressive use of phototherapy significantly improves the rate of neurodevelopmental impairment, although the risks of this treatment outweigh the benefits in very low-birth-weight-infants, according to two studies published in the Oct. 30 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.
Credit Crisis to Take Long-Term Toll on Health System
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Although in the short term the United Kingdom's National Health Service may avoid any serious impact from the credit crisis, in the medium to long term it will stall funding increases at the same time as worsening social deprivation and unemployment will put more pressure on its services, according to a feature published online on Oct. 28 in the BMJ.
Rice Is a Common and Severe Allergen
TUESDAY, Oct. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Despite its reputation as a hypoallergenic food, rice is emerging as a common trigger of food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome, according to a study published online Oct. 28 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.
Serious Infections in Infancy Affect Later Arthritis Risk
TUESDAY, Oct. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Serious infections in infancy are associated with an increased risk of both idiopathic juvenile arthritis and later rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study published online Oct. 28 in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.
Pneumococcal Vaccination Still Only Developed World Trend
MONDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Despite the fact that the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is highly efficacious in preventing pneumococcal disease, routine vaccination with it is offered in only 26 countries worldwide, none of which is a lower-middle-income or low-income country, according to a report published in the Oct. 24 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Protein Is Necessary for Immunity Through Breast Milk
FRIDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- A protein involved in directing antibody-secreting lymphocytes to the right location is necessary to direct large numbers of these cells to the lactating breast so the antibodies can be passed on to the baby, according to a report in the Nov. 1 issue of the Journal of Immunology.
History May Influence Racial Health Disparities
FRIDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- The lower average birth weight in African Americans than European Americans may be due in part to nutritional factors their ancestors experienced during slavery, and low birth weight and factors contributing to it, in turn, may influence later race-based health disparities in adulthood, according to two articles published online Oct. 16 in the American Journal of Human Biology.
US Medical Schools Expand Enrollment to Meet Demand
FRIDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- In response to the increasing demand for physicians, U.S. medical schools have increased first-year enrollment to more than 18,000 students, the highest enrollment in history, according to a report from the Association of American Medical Colleges.
Placebo Treatments Commonly Utilized
FRIDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians utilizing placebo treatments may not be fully transparent about their use, according to research published Oct. 23 in BMJ Online First.
Three Million US Children Have Food or Digestive Allergies
FRIDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Over the 10-year period between 1997 and 2007, the number of U.S. children with a food or digestive allergy increased 18 percent, according to a report published online in October by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.
Eating Styles Linked to Increased Risk of Overweight
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Adults who eat until full or eat quickly have a doubled risk of being overweight, and those who report both behaviors have a tripled risk, according to research published Oct. 21 in BMJ Online First.
Financial Bailout Puts US Health Care Reform in Jeopardy
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 22 (HealthDay News) -- The health care reform plans of the two U.S. presidential campaigns are both likely to suffer implementation setbacks due to the government's $700 billion bailout of the country's troubled financial sector, according to an article published online Oct. 22 in The Lancet Oncology.
Even with Insured Parent, Youths May Be Uninsured
TUESDAY, Oct. 21 (HealthDay News) -- More than 3 percent of children and adolescents with at least one parent covered by health insurance in a sample were uninsured, according to research published in the Oct. 22/29 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Allergy Patch Tests on Children, Adults Get Similar Results
TUESDAY, Oct. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Adults and children have very similar levels of positive reaction to allergen patch tests, and the frequency of irritant reaction is similar across both pediatric and adult populations, according to a study published in the October issue of the Archives of Dermatology.
Breast-Feeding Interventions Better Than Usual Care
TUESDAY, Oct. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Pre- and post-natal interventions improve breast-feeding rates more than usual care, researchers report, and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) provides evidenced-based recommendations regarding the promotion of breast-feeding, in two reports published in the Oct. 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
New Genetic Screen May Find Underlying Autism Causes
MONDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) may provide an efficient, inexpensive method of detecting chromosomal abnormalities associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) for genetic counseling purposes, according to research published Oct. 16 in BMC Medical Genomics.
UK Researchers Demand Regulatory Relief
FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- High-quality clinical research is essential, but a poorly coordinated, inconsistent and illogical bureaucracy placed on investigators threatens continuation of clinical research in the United Kingdom, according to a report published online Oct. 16 in BMJ.
United States Infant Mortality Rates Examined
FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- With more than 28,000 children dying under 1 year of age each year, the U.S. infant mortality rate is higher than rates in most other developed countries, and no better than Poland and Slovakia, according to the October U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) Data Brief, Recent Trends in Infant Mortality in the United States.
Benzodiazepine Use Lengthens Infants' Withdrawal Treatment
FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Later gestational age and exposure to benzodiazepines were associated with increased length of treatment for neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) among infants born to women on methadone maintenance therapy, according to a report in the October issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Intracranial Pressure Control Essential in Pediatric TBI
FRIDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- In the management of severe pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI), controlling elevated intracranial pressure is an important factor in patient survival, according to an article published in the October issue of the Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics.
Underactive Dorsal Striatum May Play Role in Overeating
FRIDAY, Oct. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Obese individuals may overeat to compensate for a decreased response to food reward in the dorsal striatum, especially those individuals with genetic polymorphisms that may lower dopamine signaling in this area, according to research published in the Oct. 17 issue of Science.
Variants at Chromosome 17q21 Linked to Early Asthma
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Variants at chromosome 17q21 are associated with an increased risk of early-onset asthma and interact with early-life exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, according to study findings published online Oct. 15 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Monovalent Poliovirus Vaccine Superior to Trivalent Vaccine
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 15 (HealthDay News) -- The monovalent type 1 oral poliovirus vaccine is more effective than trivalent oral poliovirus vaccine when given at birth, according to research published in the Oct. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Dispersible Malaria Treatment for Children Safe and Effective
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 15 (HealthDay News) -- A new, dispersible formulation of artemether-lumefantrine is as safe and effective as the currently used crushed tablet to treat infants and children with uncomplicated Plasmodium falciparum, according to research published online Oct. 15 in The Lancet.
Drugs Reduce Cholesterol in Teens with Genetic Disorder
TUESDAY, Oct. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Simvastatin plus ezetimibe is better than simvastatin alone in reducing low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) in adolescents with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia, an inherited disease characterized by abnormally high LDL-C levels, according to a report in the Oct. 21 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Child's Health Impacted by Family Income
MONDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Family income, education and state of residence may determine children's health in the United States, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundations' report America's Health Starts With Healthy Children: How Do States Compare?
Childhood Asthma Underdiagnosed, Undertreated
MONDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Early childhood asthma is often underrecognized because of a wide variation in symptoms and because symptoms are common to a number of childhood illnesses, according to a commentary in the October issue of Clinical Pediatrics.
Model May Explain Variability in Sleep-Disordered Breathing
FRIDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Factors with competing effects on regional cerebral oxygenation in children can be put into a model that may explain the variability in neurocognitive deficits in children with sleep-disordered breathing (SDB), according to research published in the Oct. 15 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
Statement on Preventive Counseling for STDs Released
FRIDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- A systematic review of research for counseling to decrease sexually transmitted infections (STIs), published with a U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation on the subject, demonstrates modest declines in STIs, but questions remain as to whether the results can be translated into general practice, according to a report in the Oct. 7 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Recommended Isolation Period for Mumps Patients Reduced
FRIDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have all revised their isolation guidance for mumps patients down from nine days to five days after onset of parotitis, according to a report published in the Oct. 10 issue of the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
FDA Supports Cough Remedy Voluntary Labeling Change
FRIDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a statement in support of the members of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association who will voluntarily change the labeling of non-prescription over-the-counter cough and cold remedies to state that they should not be given to children under the age of 4 years.
Microwave Ovens Present Burn Risk to Children
THURSDAY, Oct. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Many pediatric burns are the result of children removing hot substances from microwave ovens or from young children being supervised or around hot substances with older children, researchers report in the October issue of Pediatrics.
Childhood Bipolar Disorder Often Persists in Adulthood
THURSDAY, Oct. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Bipolar I disorder diagnosed in childhood is likely to continue into young adulthood and is associated with a high rate of substance use disorders, according to the results of a study published in the October issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Endocrine Society Publishes Pediatric Obesity Guideline
THURSDAY, Oct. 9 (HealthDay News) -- The Endocrine Society has developed an evidence-based guideline recommending strategies for the prevention and treatment of pediatric obesity, and the report was released online in September in advance of publication in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
Hepatitis B Vaccine Linked to Inflammatory Demyelination
THURSDAY, Oct. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Although hepatitis B vaccination usually does not increase the risk of pediatric central nervous system inflammatory demyelination, the Engerix B vaccine may be associated with an increased risk, particularly for confirmed cases of multiple sclerosis, according to a report published online Oct. 8 in Neurology.
GAD-alum May Help Preserve Beta-Cell Function
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The use of GAD-alum (alum-formulated 65-kD isoform of glutamic acid decarboxylase) in patients with recent-onset type 1 diabetes may help preserve residual insulin secretion, according to research published online Oct. 8 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Parents Express Doubt About Childhood Vaccines
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- More than one in four parents in the United States have doubts about childhood vaccinations and their wide-ranging concerns should be addressed by clinicians, according to an article published in the October issue of Pediatrics.
Americans Urged to Get Physically Active
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has published guidelines on physical activity for Americans of all ages and physical conditions. The guidelines are designed to be easy for people to incorporate into their daily lives.
Parenting Style Predicts Peer Victimization in Children
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Young children who receive harsh parenting are more likely to be chronically victimized by their peers in preschool and early elementary school, according to the results of a study published in the October issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Hospitalists Linked to Lower Costs for Pediatric Diseases
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Pediatric patients with medically complex subspecialty diseases seen by staff-only pediatric hospitalists incur lower costs and have shorter hospital stays than patients seen by the more traditional faculty/housestaff service, researchers report in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
Opportunities to Immunize Adolescents Often Missed
TUESDAY, Oct. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescents regularly attending preventive care visits are more likely to be up-to-date on immunizations, but significant opportunities for improvement exist and more effective strategies to increase immunization are needed, researchers report in the October issue of Pediatrics.
S. aureus Co-Infection Increasing in Pediatric Flu Patients
TUESDAY, Oct. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Although influenza deaths are rare among patients younger than 18 years of age, co-infection with Staphylococcus aureus among pediatric patients increased fivefold between 2004 and 2007, researchers report in the October issue of Pediatrics.
Poorly Matched Flu Vaccine Didn't Protect Children Under 5
TUESDAY, Oct. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In two influenza seasons when vaccines were a suboptimal match for circulating strains of the flu virus, vaccination of children under the age of 5 years did not reduce the number of influenza-related inpatient or outpatient visits, according to a report published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
Pediatricians Selective When Disclosing Medical Errors
TUESDAY, Oct. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Pediatricians are more likely to disclose medical errors affecting their patients when the error is more apparent to the family, according to an article published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
Fans May Help Lower Sudden Infant Death Risk
MONDAY, Oct. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Using a fan in rooms where infants are sleeping may reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), particularly when temperatures are higher, according to research published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
Hip Procedure Essentially Unchanged for 50 Years
MONDAY, Oct. 6 (HealthDay News) -- The surgical technique for open reduction and innominate osteotomy for developmental hip dislocation -- which has essentially remained unchanged in the 50 years since it was introduced -- is the focus of an article published in a supplement to the October issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.
FDA Releases Interim Safety Assessment on Melamine
MONDAY, Oct. 6 (HealthDay News) -- No level of melamine and melamine-related compounds in infant formula can be established that does not raise public health concerns, according to an interim safety and risk assessment released Oct. 3 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Early Stress Leads to Long-Term Changes in Mice
FRIDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- A mouse model of chronic early stress demonstrated acute and long-lasting neuroendocrine and cognitive changes, according to research published in the October issue of Endocrinology.
Biz Regulation, Cooperation May Improve Public Health
FRIDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- The ideal way to encourage big businesses to respond to public health problems could involve compelling them with performance-based regulations or, conversely, fostering an atmosphere of collaboration with them, according to two Head-to-Head articles published Oct. 2 in BMJ.
Slow Fetal Growth May Predict Perinatal Outcomes
FRIDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Slow growth between the first and second trimesters of pregnancy is a strong predictor of perinatal death, researchers report in the October issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Birth Size Linked to Breast Cancer Risk
THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Birth size, particularly birth length, is associated with the risk of breast cancer, according to a report published online Sept. 30 in PLoS Medicine.
Standard Eye Test for Preschoolers Performs Poorly
THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- The fixation preference test, widely used by eye specialists to test vision in preschoolers, fails to accurately identify interocular differences in visual acuity, according to an article published in the October issue of Ophthalmology, while a related article concludes that the incidence of decreased visual acuity among children aged 30 months through 71 months is very low.
Target of Bipolar Disorder Drug Linked to Cardiac Defects
THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Deletion of one form of the protein targeted by lithium, which is used to treat bipolar disorder, causes congenital cardiac defects in developing mice, according to research published online Oct. 1 in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
Reduced Cortisol Levels Linked to Antisocial Behavior
THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescents with conduct disorder have higher basal levels of cortisol than their counterparts without the condition, but they secrete less of the hormone under stressful conditions, according to study findings published in the Oct. 1 issue of Biological Psychiatry.
Wheezing Due to Virus Linked to Asthma Risk
THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Wheezing illnesses due to rhinovirus infection are a strong predictor of developing asthma in high-risk children, according to a report in the Oct. 1 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.
FDA: New Test Approved for Detecting Influenza Viruses
WEDNESDAY, Oct. 1 (HealthDay News) -- The Human Influenza Virus Real-Time RT-PCR Detection and Characterization Panel (rRT-PCR Flu Panel) -- a new test developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- received approval Sept. 30 from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the diagnosis of seasonal human influenza infections as well as influenza A (H5N1).
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