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November 2007 Briefing - Pediatrics

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Pediatrics for November 2007. 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.

Study Explores Timing of Sexual Debut on Outcomes

FRIDAY, Nov. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Early initiation of sexual activity among adolescents is associated with long-term negative sexual outcomes such as increased sexual risk behaviors and problems in sexual functioning, reports an article published online Nov. 29 in the American Journal of Public Health.

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Some Hospital Patients May Ingest Alcohol Hand Rubs

FRIDAY, Nov. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Alcohol hand rubs in hospitals are potentially hazardous to young, confused, elderly or alcohol-dependent patients who may be likely to unintentionally or intentionally ingest them, according to a case report published in the Dec. 1 issue of BMJ.

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Chlamydia Rapid Test Provides Rapid, Accurate Results

FRIDAY, Nov. 30 (HealthDay News) -- The new Chlamydia Rapid Test can quickly and accurately detect chlamydia infections, and allow for same-day treatment, according to a report published online Nov. 30 in BMJ Online First.

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Parents, Peers Influence Teens' Indoor Tanning Habits

THURSDAY, Nov. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Parents -- and to a lesser extent peers -- play an important role in adolescent indoor tanning behavior, researchers report in the December issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Undocumented Latinos Use Fewer Health Care Services

THURSDAY, Nov. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Citizens of Mexico and other Latin American countries who are not legal U.S. residents are less likely to utilize U.S. medical services than their U.S.-born counterparts and more likely to report negative experiences with the health care system. But they are also less likely to report difficulty obtaining necessary health care, according to a study published in the Nov. 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Cancer Risk from CT Scans May Be Underestimated

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The growing use of computed tomography (CT) scans may have serious public health implications, as radiation exposure associated with these scans may increase the risk of cancer, particularly in children, according to an article published in the Nov. 29 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Pattern of Lifetime Drinking May Influence Metabolic Risk

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 28 (HealthDay News) -- People whose alcohol consumption peaks early in life have a modestly increased risk of developing metabolic syndrome compared to people who maintain more moderate intakes throughout a longer period of life, according to research published online Nov. 20 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Arsenic Exposure Leaves Biomarkers in Newborns

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure of pregnant women to arsenic results in clearly identifiable and highly predictive gene expression changes in their newborns, researchers report in the November issue of PLoS Genetics.

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Early Life Experience Has Little Bearing on Later Activity

MONDAY, Nov. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Few characteristics of early childhood are reliable predictors of physical activity in 11- and 12-year-old children, according to a report published Nov. 23 in BMJ Online First.

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Fatigue, Headaches Common at 11 Weeks After Childbirth

MONDAY, Nov. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Eleven weeks after giving birth, new mothers still had an average of 4.1 childbirth-related symptoms, most often fatigue, according to a prospective cohort study published in the November/December issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Impasse with Indonesia Over Bird Flu Demands Solution

FRIDAY, Nov. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Indonesia's recent reluctance to share samples of avian influenza A (H5N1) virus poses a potential threat to global public health, and it may require a novel approach to resolve, according to an essay in the November issue of PLoS Medicine.

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Babies Identify and Prefer Helpful People

THURSDAY, Nov. 22 (HealthDay News) -- At 6 and 10 months old, babies are able to evaluate whether or not a person's actions towards others are helpful, and express a preference for helpful people, according to a letter published online Nov. 21 in Nature.

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Surgeons Asked to Repair Cleft Lips, Palates Worldwide

THURSDAY, Nov. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Specialists in facial plastic surgery should commit themselves to a goal of ensuring that every child in the world born with a cleft lip or palate receives appropriate reconstructive surgery, according to an editorial in the November/December issue of the Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery.

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Little Benefit of Lung Transplant for Cystic Fibrosis

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Lung transplantation prolongs survival in few children with cystic fibrosis and may even be harmful, according to a report in the Nov. 22 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Rapid Response Team Benefits Pediatric Inpatients

TUESDAY, Nov. 20 (HealthDay News) -- The introduction of a rapid response team in a freestanding, quaternary care academic children's hospital significantly reduced hospital-wide mortality rates and code rates outside of the intensive care unit setting, according to study findings published in the Nov. 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Poorest Nations Lose Doctors to U.S. Primary Care

TUESDAY, Nov. 20 (HealthDay News) -- In order to maintain its supply of primary care physicians, the United States is drawing medical school graduates from the countries that need doctors most, researchers report in the November/December Annals of Family Medicine.

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Watchful Waiting Best for Many Children's Throat Symptoms

MONDAY, Nov. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Treating children with adenotonsillectomy for mild to moderate symptoms of throat infection or adenotonsillar hypertrophy has little clinical benefit and significantly increases treatment costs, researchers report in the November issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology - Head & Neck Surgery.

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Early Examination Can Predict Retinopathy of Prematurity

MONDAY, Nov. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Eye examinations on preterm babies revealed that those who went on to develop retinopathy of prematurity in infancy had significantly larger retinal vessel diameter at 31 to 34 weeks' post-conception age, according to a report published in the November issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Inequities in Rich Countries Delay Child Progress

FRIDAY, Nov. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Reducing inequality among children in rich, developed countries may improve their well-being more than boosting economic growth, researchers report Nov. 16 in BMJ Online First.

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Heart Syndrome May Be More Common in Those with MELAS

THURSDAY, Nov. 15 (HealthDay News) -- People with MELAS syndrome (mitochondrial encephalopathy, lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes) and a common underlying genetic mutation appear to be at higher risk of Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome, according to research published in the November issue of the Archives of Neurology.

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Mortality Risk of Late-Preterm Babies Lasts Through Infancy

THURSDAY, Nov. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Babies born at late-preterm, between 34 and 36 weeks' gestation, have higher mortality rates than their term-born counterparts that persist throughout infancy, according to study findings published in the November issue of the Journal of Pediatrics.

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New Guidelines Issued for Cystic Fibrosis Drug Therapy

THURSDAY, Nov. 15 (HealthDay News) -- A new set of practice guidelines for the treatment of cystic fibrosis, issued by the Pulmonary Therapies Committee of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, provides recommendations for or against more than a dozen drug therapies used in the maintenance of pulmonary function. The guidelines are published in the Nov. 15 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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Physicians Uncertain How to Interact with Diverse Patients

THURSDAY, Nov. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Many health professionals are uncertain how to deal with patients of different races and ethnicities, leading to disempowerment that may inadvertently contribute to racial and ethnic disparities in health care delivery, according to a study published in the November issue of PLoS Medicine.

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Alcohol Binge in Pregnancy May Affect Fetal Brain

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Binge drinking during pregnancy -- defined as consuming five or more alcoholic beverages in a single setting -- is not consistently associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes, with the exception of a possible effect on neurodevelopmental outcomes, according to a systematic review published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health in December.

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Lung Function Affected by Socioeconomic Status

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Research demonstrates a consistent inverse correlation between social class and lung function in children and adults, according to a report in the November issue of the journal Chest.

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Vaccine Programs Reduce or Eliminate 13 Major Diseases

TUESDAY, Nov. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Cases of 13 vaccine-preventable diseases have been dramatically reduced and in some cases eliminated by vaccination programs in the United States, researchers report in the Nov. 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Peculiar Sleep Modifications Seen in Asperger Syndrome

TUESDAY, Nov. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Children and adolescents with Asperger syndrome have peculiar alterations in their cyclic alternating pattern, according to research published in the November issue of Sleep.

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FDA Approves Zyrtec-D for Over-the-Counter Sale

MONDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The allergy drug Zyrtec-D has been approved for non-prescription use in adults and children aged 12 years and older, according to a statement by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Antidepressant Benefits in Teens Studied

MONDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Two studies on the use of medications to combat tobacco use, substance abuse, conduct disorders and depression in adolescents show benefit but results are mixed. Both studies appear in the November issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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Infant Regurgitation Usually Not Due to Reflux Disease

MONDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Most infants with persistent regurgitation do not have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and do not need anti-reflux medications, researchers report in the November issue of Pediatrics.

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Rates of Diarrhea in Kids Fall After Sanitation Project

FRIDAY, Nov. 9 (HealthDay News) -- An urban sanitation intervention in a Brazilian city led to a 22 percent drop in the prevalence of diarrhea in young children, demonstrating the powerful impact sanitation measures have on public health, according to an article published in the Nov. 10 issue of The Lancet.

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Prenatal Alcohol Use Linked to Problems in Children

FRIDAY, Nov. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Children of mothers who drink alcohol while pregnant are more likely to have various problems than those of non-drinking moms, but the cause may be maternal abuse of many substances, including alcohol, researchers report in the November issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Violent TV Shows Promote Childhood Aggression

FRIDAY, Nov. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Preschool boys who are exposed to violent television programming may be more likely to engage in aggressive behavior later in childhood than boys who are not exposed to such programming, according to a report published in the November issue of Pediatrics.

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Chickenpox Vaccination Reduces Severe Complications

THURSDAY, Nov. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Universal vaccination of children against varicella-zoster virus would prevent severe complications due to chickenpox, according to the results of a study published online Nov. 8 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

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Parental Mental Illness Linked to Sudden Infant Death

THURSDAY, Nov. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS, is elevated in infants with one or both parents who have been admitted for psychiatric treatment, according to study findings published in the November issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Congenital Heart Disease Linked to Brain Abnormalities

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Term infants with severe congenital heart disease requiring surgery often have widespread brain abnormalities similar to those seen in premature infants, which may reflect abnormal brain development in utero, according to the results of a study published in the Nov. 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Humoral Immunity Has Long Duration to Viral Antigens

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- The duration of humoral immunity to common viral antigens is remarkably long, but its duration to common vaccine antigens is somewhat shorter, according to a report published in the Nov. 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Caffeine Therapy Beneficial in Apnea of Prematurity

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In very low birth weight infants with apnea of prematurity, caffeine therapy increases the odds of survival without neurodevelopmental disability at 18 to 21 months, according to a report published in the Nov. 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Exercise Boosts Fitness for Children with Cerebral Palsy

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Children and adolescents with cerebral palsy who participate in an exercise training program can achieve significant improvements in physical fitness and quality of life, researchers report in the November issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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Non-Maternal Care Can Reduce Aggression in At-Risk Kids

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Non-maternal care services can lower the risk of chronic physical aggression problems in children of mothers with low education levels, even though such risks are higher than for other children, researchers report in the November issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Teens Who Smoke Cannabis But Not Tobacco Fare Better

TUESDAY, Nov. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescents who use cannabis but not tobacco are generally better adjusted than those who use both substances, and screening for adolescent substance abuse should take place in a variety of health care settings, according to two studies published in the November issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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Sleep Duration Linked to Overweight in Schoolchildren

TUESDAY, Nov. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Short sleep duration independently increases the risk of overweight in children aged 9 and 12, researchers report in the November issue of Pediatrics.

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Psychiatric Problems in Childhood Predict Adult Arrests

FRIDAY, Nov. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Large percentages of those who are arrested in adulthood have histories of childhood psychiatric disorders, researchers report in the November issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Broad Coalition Needed to Address Obesity Epidemic

FRIDAY, Nov. 2 (HealthDay News) -- A broad approach uniting government, private industry and other societal groups is needed to address the obesity epidemic in the United Kingdom, and enacting the necessary cultural change to combat obesity is indeed feasible, according to an editorial published in the Nov. 3 issue of The Lancet.

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Cause of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Eludes Scientists

FRIDAY, Nov. 2 (HealthDay News) -- While public health initiatives have made strides in reducing the incidence of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), it is unlikely to be eliminated until the cause of SIDS is understood, posits a review article published in the Nov. 3 issue of The Lancet.

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Study Explores Impact of Breast-Feeding on Lung Growth

THURSDAY, Nov. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Longer breast-feeding appears to positively influence lung growth in children of non-asthmatic mothers, whereas breast-feeding in children of mothers with asthma is associated with impaired measures of lung function in later childhood, according to study findings published in the November issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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