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February 21, 2013
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News for pediatricians and other child health professionals

  Top Stories 
  • FDA: Codeine use after tonsillectomy can be fatal to children
    The FDA issued a warning Wednesday against the use of codeine-containing drugs to ease pain in children who have had their tonsils or adenoids removed, following 13 reports of child deaths linked to the drug. Since many of these children had sleep apnea, "they may have been particularly sensitive to the breathing difficulties that can result when codeine is converted in the body to high levels of morphine," officials said. The agency said it will require all codeine-containing products to have a boxed warning against use in children after such surgeries. The Wall Street Journal (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Overall calorie intake down slightly in children, CDC says
    Adults ate, on average, about 11% of their daily calories from fast food between 2007 and 2010, down from 13% from 2003 to 2006, CDC researchers reported on Thursday. The overall calorie intake of children dropped, but the calories they consumed from saturated fat remained above optimal levels. Reuters (2/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Pediatric Health Care 
  • Low birth weight babies may need more screening for infections
    Standard culturing used in low birth weight babies with early-onset sepsis to detect bacterial infections failed to spot more than 20 bacterial species, a study showed. The findings, published in the journal PLoS One, suggest the need to conduct several tests among such newborns to detect infections missed by standard exams. HealthDay News (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Psychological effects of childhood bullying may last until adulthood
    Children who were bullied or had been both bully and victim were more likely to suffer from psychological problems as young adults, U.S. researchers wrote in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. Aside from being at greater risk for anxiety and depression, children who were both perpetrator and victims of bullying had the highest levels of suicidal thoughts, the study showed. HealthDay News (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study: Physical therapy can help pediatric constipation
    Physical therapy techniques, such as training abdominal muscles, massage and breathing exercises, used with laxatives, help treat chronic constipation but not fecal incontinence among children, according to a Brazilian study in the journal Colorectal Disease. Researchers said the therapy may stimulate colon movement, along with improving abdominal muscle tone and fecal propulsion. MedWire News (U.K.) (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Trends & Technology 
  • How do parents choose a pediatrician?
    A survey by the University of Michigan Mott Children's Hospital revealed most parents still consider word-of-mouth advice when choosing a pediatrician, but online reviews are gaining prominence, with younger parents and women more likely to consider online assessments important. Insurance, a doctor's experience and the practice's location were also important factors. HealthDay News (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Few pre-med students intend to venture into primary care
    A Kaplan Test Prep poll of 543 pre-med students in the U.S. showed that only 32% of them plan to pursue primary care after getting their medical degrees, while the rest said they wanted to become specialists. Although academic or personal interest was the most-cited reason for studying to be specialists, researchers said that "earning potential is understandably a key factor considering how much debt most medical school graduates are saddled with." (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Health Policy & Regulations 
  • Advocates worry too few children will get dental coverage
    Dental plans, including pediatric dental coverage mandated by the Affordable Care Act, are likely to be sold separately on health insurance exchanges, and patient advocates worry that few people will sign up. Moreover, parents who do not obtain dental coverage for their children are unlikely to be penalized. The Wall Street Journal (2/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  The Last Word - News from the AAP 
  • AAP joins Choosing Wisely campaign that aims to reduce overtreatment
    An initiative of the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation, Choosing Wisely asks physicians and patients to question whether treatments, tests and procedures are supported by evidence, free from harm and truly necessary. Each medical organization developed “5 things” that may be overused in that specialty. Avoiding unnecessary use of antibiotics and cough and cold medications, as well as reducing the routine use of CT scans and other imaging in children, made the AAP Top 5 list. For more information, visit the Choosing Wisely website or AAP News online. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Call for tobacco abstracts: 2013 AAP National Conference and Exhibition
    The Provisional Section on Tobacco Control is accepting submissions that address any aspect of tobacco and child health. Both AAP members and nonmembers are welcome to submit materials by April 12, by visiting the NCE conference website. Visit the PSOTCo website for additional information. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed."
--Maria Montessori,
Italian physician and educator

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This news roundup is provided as a timely update to AAP members and other health professionals about child health topics in the media. Links to articles are provided for the convenience of pediatricians who may find them of use in discussions with patients or colleagues.
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