Since the introduction of rotavirus vaccines, diarrhea-associated health care utilization among US children has decreased substantially. Moreover, indirect benefits from rotavirus vaccination have been observed in unvaccinated children and in adults.
With increasing rotavirus vaccine coverage during 2009–2011, we observed continued reductions in diarrhea-associated health care utilization and cost. Both rotavirus vaccines conferred high protection against rotavirus hospitalizations; pentavalent rotavirus vaccine provided durable protection through the fourth year of life. (Read the full article)
Varicella vaccine is effective, but there is concern that widespread use in young children may lead to a shift in the age of infection, with potentially more severe disease later in childhood and adolescence.
This study documents that varicella vaccine resulted in a decline of varicella incidence and hospitalization in all age groups, with no shift to older age groups. (Read the full article)
The US health care system transition to the ICD-10-CM will occur in October 2015. The logistical and financial impact of the transition for billing codes frequently used by pediatricians has not been studied.
The findings of this study evaluate the government-provided mappings from ICD-9-CM to ICD-10-CM for accuracy and provide the diagnostic codes used by pediatricians, which may be adversely affected by the transition to ICD-10-CM. (Read the full article)
Studies on adult patients who have Crohn disease have shown a comparative benefit of anti-TNFα versus placebo and thiopurines. These same studies have not been done in children, because of time, cost, and ethical (withholding an efficacious treatment) challenges.
Anti-TNFα therapy administered in routine practice to children with Crohn disease was more effective than usual care at achieving clinical and corticosteroid-free remission. Using data from the ImproveCareNow learning health system for observational research is feasible and produces valuable evidence. (Read the full article)
Indoor tanning with UV radiation–emitting lamps is common among adolescents and young adults. Rising incidence rates of basal cell carcinoma (BCC) have been reported for the United States and elsewhere, particularly among those diagnosed at younger ages. Recent epidemiologic studies have raised concerns that indoor tanning may be contributing to early occurrence of BCC, and younger people may be especially vulnerable to cancer risk associated with this exposure. Therefore, we sought to address these issues in a population-based case–control study from New Hampshire.
Data on indoor tanning were obtained on 657 cases of BCC and 452 controls ≤50 years of age.
Early-onset BCC was related to indoor tanning, with an adjusted odds ratio (OR) of 1.6 (95% confidence interval, 1.3–2.1). The strongest association was observed for first exposure as an adolescent or young adult, with a 10% increase in the OR with each age younger at first exposure (OR per year of age ≤23 = 1.1; 95% confidence interval, 1.0–1.2). Associations were present for each type of device examined (ie, sunlamps, tanning beds, and tanning booths).
Our findings suggest early exposure to indoor tanning increases the risk of early development of BCC. They also underscore the importance of counseling adolescents and young adults about the risks of indoor tanning and for discouraging parents from consenting minors to this practice.
Rates of performing skeletal survey (SS) for young children presenting with fractures and at risk for abuse vary substantially across providers, with disparities associated with patients’ characteristics. Lack of consensus regarding indications for SS also contributes to this variation.
The results of this study provide a set of explicit consensus guidelines, based on the literature and on the knowledge of experts from several medical specialties, for identifying children with fractures who should undergo an initial SS. (Read the full article)
Children are often evaluated in the emergency department after a concussion. Although prolonged symptoms are associated with higher initial symptom severity when measured 2 to 3 weeks after injury, a similar association with acute symptom severity has not been demonstrated.
Higher acute symptom severity is not associated with development of persistent post-concussion symptoms 1 month after injury, but persistent post-concussive symptoms affect a significant number of children after concussion. Outpatient follow-up is essential to identify children who develop persistent symptoms. (Read the full article)
The majority of research on terrorism-exposed youth has examined large-scale terrorism with mass casualties. Limited research has examined children’s reactions to terrorism of the scope of the Boston Marathon bombing. Furthermore, the extraordinary postattack interagency manhunt and shelter-in-place warning made for a truly unprecedented experience in its own right for families. Understanding the psychological adjustment of Boston-area youth in the aftermath of these events is critical for informing clinical efforts.
Survey of Boston-area parents/caretakers (N = 460) reporting on their child’s experiences during the attack week, as well as psychosocial functioning in the first 6 attack months.
There was heterogeneity across youth in attack- and manhunt-related experiences and clinical outcomes. The proportion of youth with likely attack/manhunt-related posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was roughly 6 times higher among Boston Marathon–attending youth than nonattending youth. Attack and manhunt experiences each uniquely predicted 9% of PTSD symptom variance, with manhunt exposures more robustly associated than attack-related exposures with a range of psychosocial outcomes, including emotional symptoms, conduct problems, hyperactivity/inattention, and peer problems. One-fifth of youth watched >3 hours of televised coverage on the attack day, which was linked to PTSD symptoms, conduct problems, and total difficulties. Prosocial behavior and positive peer functioning buffered the impact of exposure.
Clinical efforts must maintain a broadened focus beyond simply youth present at the blasts and must also include youth highly exposed to the intense interagency pursuit and manhunt. Continued research is needed to understand the adjustment of youth after mass traumas and large-scale manhunts in residential communities.
Homicide is the third leading cause of mortality in general population youth aged 15 to 29 years. Groups at greatest risk for early violent death (racial/ethnic minorities, males, poor persons, and urban youth) are overrepresented in the juvenile justice system.
We examined rates of and risk factors for firearm homicide and other causes of death in delinquents 16 years after detention. Our study analyzes gender differences; compares Hispanics, African Americans, and non-Hispanic whites; and includes a representative sample of delinquents. (Read the full article)
The traditional process-focused approach to quality improvement has not remedied NICUs’ inconsistency in quality of care delivery across clinically important measures. Global measurement of quality may induce broad, systems-based improvement, but must be formally studied.
We present a systematically developed and robust composite indicator, the Baby-MONITOR, to assess the quality of care delivered to very low birth weight infants in the NICU setting. (Read the full article)
Compared with their peers, pediatric residents who report exposure to community settings anticipate greater future community involvement at the end of training. The impact of community pediatrics training on actual future community involvement is not known.
Pediatricians exposed to enhanced community pediatrics training during residency report greater participation in community activities and greater related skills than their peers nationally. (Read the full article)
Children with shaken-baby syndrome, or abusive head trauma (AHT), have lasting health and development problems. The long-term medical cost of AHT is unknown.
Patients with AHT had higher inpatient, outpatient, and drug costs compared with other children for 4 years after their abuse diagnosis, amounting to tens of thousands of dollars in excess and preventable medical care per patient with AHT. (Read the full article)
Pneumonia is a leading cause of hospitalization among children, and readmissions after discharge are common.
Eight percent of children experience a readmission within 30 days after hospital discharge for pneumonia. Readmissions are most common among young children and those with chronic medical conditions, and are associated with substantial costs. (Read the full article)
Indoor tanning has gained widespread popularity among adolescents and young adults. Incidence rates of early-onset basal cell carcinoma also appear to be rising. Scant evidence exists on the impacts of early exposure and whether it leads to early occurrence of this malignancy.
In a US population-based study, indoor tanning was associated with an elevated risk of basal cell carcinomas occurring at or before the age of 50 years, with an increasing trend in risk with younger age at exposure among adolescents and young adults. (Read the full article)
Adverse childhood experiences have been shown to have long-term impacts on health and well-being. However, little work has been done to incorporate the voices of youth in understanding the range of adverse experiences that low-income urban children face.
Study participants cited a broad range of adverse experiences beyond those listed in the initial adverse childhood experience studies. Domains of adverse experiences included family relationships, community stressors, personal victimization, economic hardship, peer relationships, discrimination, school, health, and child welfare/juvenile justice systems. (Read the full article)
Current assessments of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) may not adequately encompass the breadth of adversity to which low-income urban children are exposed. The purpose of this study was to identify and characterize the range of adverse childhood experiences faced by young adults who grew up in a low-income urban area.
Focus groups were conducted with young adults who grew up in low-income Philadelphia neighborhoods. Using the nominal group technique, participants generated a list of adverse childhood experiences and then identified the 5 most stressful experiences on the group list. The most stressful experiences identified by participants were grouped into a ranked list of domains and subdomains.
Participants identified a range of experiences, grouped into 10 domains: family relationships, community stressors, personal victimization, economic hardship, peer relationships, discrimination, school, health, child welfare/juvenile justice, and media/technology. Included in these domains were many but not all of the experiences from the initial ACEs studies; parental divorce/separation and mental illness were absent. Additional experiences not included in the initial ACEs but endorsed by our participants included single-parent homes; exposure to violence, adult themes, and criminal behavior; personal victimization; bullying; economic hardship; and discrimination.
Gathering youth perspectives on childhood adversity broadens our understanding of the experience of stress and trauma in childhood. Future work is needed to determine the significance of this broader set of adverse experiences in predisposing children to poor health outcomes as adults.
Sending and receiving sexually explicit picture and text messages (sexting) is related to sexual activity and risk behavior among some high school populations, yet little is known about sexting associations with sexual activity and risk behavior among middle school students.
This study is the first to examine sexting among a probability sample of middle school students and found that middle school students who text excessively and send and receive sexts are more likely to report being sexually active. (Read the full article)
To examine reductions in diarrhea-associated health care utilization after rotavirus vaccine implementation and to assess direct and indirect effectiveness of vaccination.
Retrospective cohort analysis of claims data of commercially insured US children aged <5 years. We examined annual pentavalent (RV5) and monovalent (RV1) rotavirus vaccine coverage. We compared rates of diarrhea-associated health care utilization in prevaccine (2001–2006) versus postvaccine introduction (2007–2011) years, compared rates of diarrhea-associated health care utilization in vaccinated versus unvaccinated children and compared rates in unvaccinated children in postvaccine versus prevaccine years.
Among children aged <5 years, RV5 and RV1 rotavirus vaccine coverage rates reached 58% and 5%, respectively, by December 31, 2010. Compared with the average rate of rotavirus-coded hospitalizations in 2001–2006, rates were reduced by 75% in 2007–2008, 60% in 2008–2009, 94% in 2009–2010, and 80% in 2010–2011. Compared with unvaccinated children, in 2010–2011, the rate of rotavirus-coded hospitalizations was reduced by 92% among RV5 recipients and 96% among RV1 recipients. Rotavirus-coded hospitalization rate reductions among RV5 recipients versus unvaccinated children ranged from 87% among <1-year-olds to 81% among 4-year-olds. Compared with prevaccine rates in 2001–2006, rotavirus-coded hospitalization rates among unvaccinated children decreased by 50% in 2007–2008, 77% in 2009–2010, and 25% in 2010–2011.
Implementation of rotavirus vaccines has substantially reduced diarrhea health care utilization in US children. Both rotavirus vaccines conferred high protection against rotavirus hospitalizations; RV5 conferred durable protection through the fourth year of life. Vaccination also conferred indirect benefits to unvaccinated children.
Electronic cigarettes have unknown health risks and youth and young adults increasingly use them. E-cigarette companies are marketing e-cigarettes using television ads. The content of these ads may appeal to young people because they emphasize themes of independence and maturity.
E-cigarette companies advertise to a broad television audience that includes 24 million youth. The reach and frequency of these ads increased dramatically between 2011 and 2013. If current trends continue, youth awareness and use of e-cigarettes are likely to increase. (Read the full article)
Rapid cranial MRI is a radiation-free method to assess children with possible ventricular shunt malfunction. However, the test performance of rapid cranial MRI has never been compared with that of cranial CT, the current reference standard.
The accuracy of rapid cranial MRI was not inferior to that of CT for diagnosing ventricular shunt malfunction. Rapid cranial MRI is an important radiation-sparing diagnostic alternative for children presenting emergently with possible ventricular shunt malfunction. (Read the full article)
Children born late and moderately preterm are at increased risk of developmental problems compared with term-born peers. Screening for developmental problems in the early years may thus aid in the early identification of children at risk for adverse outcomes.
The Parent Report of Children’s Abilities-Revised has good concurrent validity and 90% sensitivity and 76% specificity for identifying moderate/severe cognitive developmental delay in infants born late and moderately preterm. This parent questionnaire may be used as a clinical screening tool. (Read the full article)
Autism prevalence is reported to be highest among non-Hispanic white children, lower in Hispanic and African American/black children, and highly variable in Asian/Pacific Islanders. More comorbid intellectual disability and delays in expressive language have been observed among Hispanic and African American children.
Maternal nativity is a risk factor for childhood autism in US populations. We observed higher risk of severe autism phenotypes in children of foreign-born black, Central/South American, Filipino, and Vietnamese mothers and US-born African Americans and Hispanics compared with US-born whites. (Read the full article)
Mixed results exist regarding the efficacy of caregiver-mediated interventions for children who have ASD. To date, randomized controlled studies have rarely compared 2 active interventions; none have focused on targeting families who are low-resourced in the community.
Significant improvements were found in social communication of children who have autism when caregivers received a hands-on caregiver training intervention in the home. These are the first data from a low-intensity, short-term intervention with low-resourced families. (Read the full article)
Previous analyses have documented that the prevalence of children with chronic conditions is growing and is responsible for increased growth in hospital charges; however, such utilization trends have not been documented in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
From 2007 through 2010 in Illinois, children with chronic conditions became Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program recipients at a higher rate than healthy children. In contrast to studies of hospital data, this analysis found per-member spending decreases in most chronic condition groups. (Read the full article)
It is unknown if "sexting" (ie, sending/receiving sexually explicit cell phone text or picture messages) is associated with sexual activity and sexual risk behavior among early adolescents, as has been found for high school students. To date, no published data have examined these relationships exclusively among a probability sample of middle school students.
A probability sample of 1285 students was collected alongside the 2012 Youth Risk Behavior Survey in Los Angeles middle schools. Logistic regressions assessed the correlates of sexting behavior and associations between sexting and sexual activity and risk behavior (ie, unprotected sex).
Twenty percent of students with text-capable cell phone access reported receiving a sext and 5% reported sending a sext. Students who text at least 100 times per day were more likely to report both receiving (odds ratio [OR]: 2.4) and sending (OR: 4.5) sexts and to be sexually active (OR: 4.1). Students who sent sexts (OR: 3.2) and students who received sexts (OR: 7.0) were more likely to report sexual activity. Compared with not being sexually active, excessive texting and receiving sexts were associated with both unprotected sex (ORs: 4.7 and 12.1, respectively) and with condom use (ORs: 3.7 and 5.5, respectively).
Because early sexual debut is correlated with higher rates of sexually transmitted infections and teen pregnancies, pediatricians should discuss sexting with young adolescents because this may facilitate conversations about sexually transmitted infection and pregnancy prevention. Sexting and associated risks should be considered for inclusion in middle school sex education curricula.
Injuries sustained by parents in combat can also have a variety of psychological effects on children in the family. However, there has been little research on the effect of parental injury on children in the civilian setting.
The effects of injury of parents impacted children’s functioning by negatively affecting the health-related quality of life of the injured children, over and above the effect of any injury itself to the child. Injury to the parent also increased the likelihood of his or her uninjured children having PTSD symptoms 5 months after the parent’s injury. (Read the full article)
Early referral of infants with critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) is recommended to reduce mortality. However, few population-based data have been published showing the relationship between CCHD neonatal mortality and timing of cardiac evaluation at a specialty center.
In neonates with CCHD, 35% were not evaluated at a cardiac center by 4 days of age. These cases accounted for a significant number of CCHD deaths. This information enhances the rationale for pulse oximetry screening of neonates for CCHD. (Read the full article)
When varicella vaccine was licensed in the United States in 1995, there were concerns that childhood vaccination might increase the number of adolescents susceptible to varicella and shift disease toward older age groups where it can be more severe.
We conducted a series of 5 cross-sectional studies in 1994 to 1995 (prevaccine), 2000, 2003, 2006, and 2009 in Kaiser Permanente of Northern California to assess changes in varicella epidemiology in children and adolescents, as well as changes in varicella hospitalization in people of all ages. For each study, information on varicella history and varicella occurrence during the past year was obtained by telephone survey from a sample of ~8000 members 5 to 19 years old; varicella hospitalization rates were calculated for the entire membership.
Between 1995 and 2009, the overall incidence of varicella in 5- to 19-year-olds decreased from 25.8 to 1.3 per 1000 person-years, a ~90% to 95% decline in the various age categories (5–9, 10–14, and 15–19 years of age). The proportion of varicella-susceptible children and adolescents also decreased in all age groups, including in 15- to 19-year-olds (from 15.6% in 1995 to 7.6% in 2009). From 1994 to 2009, age-adjusted varicella hospitalization rates in the general member population decreased from 2.13 to 0.25 per 100 000, a ~90% decline.
In the 15 years after the introduction of varicella vaccine, a major reduction in varicella incidence and hospitalization was observed with no evidence of a shift in the burden of varicella to older age groups.
The definition of hypertension in children is complex because of the age-, gender-, and height-specific blood pressure algorithm. Blood pressure to height ratio was reported to easily identify hypertension in Chinese children living in a local area (Hebei Province).
Blood pressure to height ratio index is simple and accurate for screening for prehypertension and hypertension in Chinese children aged 6 to 17 years and can be used for early screening or treating Chinese children with hypertension. (Read the full article)
Caffeine has predictable effects on cardiovascular function in both adults and children. Our previous work has shown that there are gender differences in this cardiovascular response, with boys having a greater change in heart rate and blood pressure than girls.
This study shows that the gender differences in cardiovascular response to caffeine emerge after puberty and there are some differences in postpubertal girls across the menstrual cycle. (Read the full article)
Previous studies have revealed that children in child care are frequently ill with mild illness and are unnecessarily excluded from child care at high rates.
Parent race/ethnicity, single parents, and work-related concerns are associated with increased emergent/urgent care use for a sick child excluded from child care, even for mild illnesses. (Read the full article)
Poor health in children is associated with exposure to family violence and disruption. Telomere length has been hypothesized to be a lasting biological indicator of exposure to early adversity and potentially predictive of negative health outcomes throughout the life course.
Telomere length reflects exposure to family violence and disruption and may be an early indicator of the biological impact of early adversity. Children exposed to interpersonal violence and family disruptions had significantly shorter telomeres. Gender moderated these associations. (Read the full article)
Neurocognitive deficits, academic delays, and behavioral and emotional problems are well documented in school-age children in relation to socioeconomic disadvantage and residential instability. Despite adversity, early intervention can facilitate healthy cognitive, emotional, and social development.
Homeless youth demonstrated elevated rates of untreated psychiatric disorders, low academic achievement, and impaired neurocognition. Mental health and neurocognitive symptoms were associated with vocational outcome. Intervention beyond employment services alone is needed to improve functioning. (Read the full article)
Animal studies document dose-dependent and duration-of-therapy-dependent fluoroquinolone cartilage toxicity in weight-bearing joints. Preliminary pediatric data collected after fluoroquinolone treatment and up to 1 year posttreatment in blinded and unblinded studies suggest the possibility of cartilage toxicity in children.
These are the first prospectively collected data on fluoroquinolone musculoskeletal safety collected posttherapy from randomized, comparative studies of respiratory tract infections and analyzed at 5 years. Long-term musculoskeletal adverse events occurred with equal frequency in both levofloxacin and comparator groups. (Read the full article)
Currently, the US Food and Drug Administration does not regulate electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) marketing unless it is advertised as a smoking cessation aid. To date, the extent to which youth and young adults are exposed to e-cigarette television advertisements is unknown. The objective of this study was to analyze trends in youth and young adult exposure to e-cigarette television advertisements in the United States.
Nielsen data on television household audiences’ exposure to e-cigarette advertising across US markets were examined by calendar quarter, year, and sponsor.
Youth exposure to television e-cigarette advertisements, measured by target rating points, increased 256% from 2011 to 2013. Young adult exposure increased 321% over the same period. More than 76% of all youth e-cigarette advertising exposure occurred on cable networks and was driven primarily by an advertising campaign for 1 e-cigarette brand.
E-cigarette companies currently advertise their products to a broad audience that includes 24 million youth. The dramatic increase in youth and young adult television exposure between 2011 and 2013 was driven primarily by a large advertising campaign on national cable networks. In the absence of evidence-based public health messaging, the current e-cigarette television advertising may be promoting beliefs and behaviors that pose harm to the public health. If current trends in e-cigarette television advertising continue, awareness and use of e-cigarettes are likely to increase among youth and young adults.
In very preterm infants, outcomes depend not only on the degree of immaturity, but also on the underlying pathologies that trigger preterm delivery. Studies that have addressed this issue have provided unclear results.
Patterns of outcomes differ between maternal hypertension and chorioamnionitis: hypertension is associated with greater risks for bronchopulmonary dysplasia and retinopathy of prematurity, and lower risks for brain injury, necrotizing enterocolitis, early-onset sepsis. For mortality, the effect changes across gestational age weeks. (Read the full article)
Diagnostic codes are used widely within health care for billing, quality assessment, and to measure clinical outcomes. The US health care system will transition to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM), in October 2015. Little is known about how this transition will affect pediatric practices. The objective of this study was to examine how the transition to ICD-10-CM may result in ambiguity of clinical information and financial disruption for pediatricians.
Using a statewide data set from Illinois Medicaid specified for pediatricians, 2708 International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification, diagnosis codes were identified. Diagnosis codes were categorized into 1 of 5 categories: identity, class-to-subclass, subclass-to-class, convoluted, and no translation. The convoluted and high-cost diagnostic codes (n = 636) were analyzed for accuracy and categorized into "information loss," "overlapping categories," "inconsistent," and "consistent." Finally, reimbursement by Medicaid was calculated for each category.
Twenty-six percent of pediatric diagnosis codes are convoluted, which represents 21% of Illinois Medicaid pediatric patient encounters and 16% of reimbursement. The diagnosis codes represented by information loss (3.6%), overlapping categories (3.2%), and inconsistent (1.2%) represent 8% of Medicaid pediatric reimbursement.
The potential for financial disruption and administrative errors from 8% of reimbursement diagnosis codes necessitates special attention to these codes in preparing for the transition to ICD-10-CM for pediatric practices.
Parents in disadvantaged households are less likely to book share with their children during early childhood. These children are more likely to enter school with delays in emergent literacy and language skills, apparent as early as the age of 3.
This study examines the effect of parental immigrant status as a predictor of reading and sharing books with children. This research disentangles immigrant status from other variables thought to explain disparities in familial practices related to emergent literacy. (Read the full article)
Previous research has demonstrated that family presence alongside hospitalized patients is associated with improvements in physiologic responses, reductions in anxiety, and expedited recovery. Recently, videoconferencing has been increasingly used for virtual visits to pediatric patients and their parents during hospitalization.
Our study demonstrates that in some cases, the use of videoconferencing by children and their parents for virtual visits is associated with greater reductions in stress during hospitalization compared with children and parents who do not use videoconferencing. (Read the full article)
ImproveCareNow (ICN) is the largest pediatric learning health system in the nation and started as a quality improvement collaborative. To test the feasibility and validity of using ICN data for clinical research, we evaluated the effectiveness of anti-tumor necrosis factor-α (anti-TNFα) agents in the management of pediatric Crohn disease (CD).
Data were collected in 35 pediatric gastroenterology practices (April 2007 to March 2012) and analyzed as a sequence of nonrandomized trials. Patients who had moderate to severe CD were classified as initiators or non-initiators of anti-TNFα therapy. Among 4130 patients who had pediatric CD, 603 were new users and 1211 were receiving anti-TNFα therapy on entry into ICN.
During a 26-week follow-up period, rate ratios obtained from Cox proportional hazards models, adjusting for patient and disease characteristics and concurrent medications, were 1.53 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.20–1.96) for clinical remission and 1.74 (95% CI, 1.33–2.29) for corticosteroid-free remission. The rate ratio for corticosteroid-free remission was comparable to the estimate produced by the adult SONIC study, which was a randomized controlled trial on the efficacy of anti-TNFα therapy. The number needed to treat was 5.2 (95% CI, 3.4–11.1) for clinical remission and 5.0 (95% CI, 3.4–10.0) for corticosteroid-free remission.
In routine pediatric gastroenterology practice settings, anti-TNFα therapy was effective at achieving clinical and corticosteroid-free remission for patients who had Crohn disease. Using data from the ICN learning health system for the purpose of observational research is feasible and produces valuable new knowledge.
To describe the influence that gestational age and chronological age have on amino acid and acylcarnitine profiles in an at-risk population of premature infants.
Metabolic profiles (15 amino acids and 35 acylcarnitines) were obtained by using standard newborn techniques on infants born between 23 and 31 completed weeks of gestation. The profiles were drawn within the first 24 hours after birth and on approximately days 7, 28, and 42 of life or at discharge. A single, central, contract laboratory analyzed and managed the samples.
We studied 995 patients; none was subsequently diagnosed with an inborn error of metabolism. Of the 3579 samples, there were 257 (7.2%) amino acid or acylcarnitine alerts reported in 214 infants (21.5% of infants studied). Both gestational age and postbirth chronological age significantly influenced the metabolic profile. Twenty-nine percent of infants at 23 to 26 weeks’ gestational age had an abnormal metabolic profile compared with 17% of infants at 29 to 31 weeks’ gestational age (P < .01). On the day of birth, 12% of the profiles were abnormal compared with 2% on day 28 (P < .01). The highest rate of abnormal values occurred on day 7 in the infants 23 to 26 weeks’ gestational age (21%).
These results demonstrate the complexity of understanding the impact of immaturity and disease on metabolic profiles used to screen for inborn errors of metabolism. Our data provide reference values for studies aimed at better understanding metabolism in preterm infants.
To develop guidelines for performing initial skeletal survey (SS) in children <24 months old with fractures, based on available evidence and collective judgment of experts from diverse pediatric specialties.
Following the Rand/UCLA Method, a multispecialty panel of 13 experts applied evidence from a literature review combined with their own expertise in rating the appropriateness of performing an SS for 525 clinical scenarios involving fractures in children <24 months old. After discussion on the initial ratings, panelists rerated SS appropriateness for 240 revised scenarios and deemed that SSs were appropriate in 191 scenarios. The panelists then assessed in which of those 191 scenarios SSs were not only appropriate, but also necessary.
Panelists agreed that SS is "appropriate" for 191 (80%) of 240 scenarios rated and "necessary" for 175 (92%) of the appropriate scenarios. Skeletal survey is necessary if a fracture is attributed to abuse, domestic violence, or being hit by a toy. With few exceptions, SS is necessary in children without a history of trauma. In children <12 months old, SS is necessary regardless of the fracture type or reported history, with rare exceptions. In children 12 to 23 months old, the necessity of obtaining SS is dependent on fracture type.
A multispecialty panel reached agreement on multiple clinical scenarios for which initial SS is indicated in young children with fractures, allowing for synthesis of clinical guidelines with the potential to decrease disparities in care and increase detection of abuse.
To compare the accuracy of rapid cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with that of computed tomography (CT) for diagnosing ventricular shunt malfunction.
We performed a single-center, retrospective cohort study of children ≤21 years of age who underwent either rapid cranial MRI or cranial CT in the emergency department (ED) for evaluation of possible ventricular shunt malfunction. Each neuroimaging study was classified as "normal" (unchanged or decreased ventricle size) or "abnormal" (increased ventricle size). We classified a patient as having a ventricular shunt malfunction if operative revision for relief of mechanical causes of altered shunt flow was needed within 72 hours of initial ED evaluation. Our primary analysis tested noninferiority of the accuracy of rapid cranial MRI to CT for diagnosing shunt malfunction (noninferiority margin 10%).
We included 698 ED visits for 286 unique patients, with a median age at visit of 10.0 years (interquartile range 5.9–15.5 years). Patients underwent CT in 336 (48%) or rapid cranial MRI in 362 (52%) of ED visits for evaluation of possible shunt malfunction. Patients had operative revision for ventricular shunt malfunction in 140 ED visits (20%). The accuracy of rapid cranial MRI was not inferior to that of CT scan for diagnosing ventricular shunt malfunction (81.8% MRI vs 82.4% CT; risk difference 2.0%; 95% confidence interval, –4.2% to 8.2%).
Rapid cranial MRI was not inferior to CT for diagnosing ventricular shunt malfunction and offers the advantage of sparing a child ionizing radiation exposure.
Up to 30% of children who have concussion initially evaluated in the emergency department (ED) display delayed symptom resolution (DSR). Greater initial symptom severity may be an easily quantifiable predictor of DSR. We hypothesized that greater symptom severity immediately after injury increases the risk for DSR.
We conducted a prospective longitudinal cohort study of children 8 to 18 years old presenting to the ED with concussion. Acute symptom severity was assessed using a graded symptom inventory. Presence of DSR was assessed 1 month later. Graded symptom inventory scores were tested for association with DSR by sensitivity analysis. We conducted a similar analysis for post-concussion syndrome (PCS) as defined by the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th revision. Potential symptoms characteristic of DSR were explored by using hierarchical cluster analysis.
We enrolled 234 subjects; 179 (76%) completed follow-up. Thirty-eight subjects (21%) experienced DSR. Initial symptom severity was not significantly associated with DSR 1 month after concussion. A total of 22 subjects (12%) had PCS. Scores >10 (possible range, 0–28) were associated with an increased risk for PCS (RR, 3.1; 95% confidence interval 1.2–8.0). Three of 6 of the most characteristic symptoms of DSR were also most characteristic of early symptom resolution. However, cognitive symptoms were more characteristic of subjects reporting DSR.
Greater symptom severity measured at ED presentation does not predict DSR but is associated with PCS. Risk stratification therefore depends on how the persistent symptoms are defined. Cognitive symptoms may warrant particular attention in future study. Follow-up is recommended for all patients after ED evaluation of concussion to monitor for DSR.
The Parent Report of Children’s Abilities-Revised (PARCA-R) is a questionnaire for assessing cognitive and language development in very preterm infants. Given the increased risk of developmental delay in infants born late and moderately preterm (LMPT; 32–36 weeks), this study aimed to validate this questionnaire as a screening tool in this population.
Parents of 219 children born LMPT completed the PARCA-R questionnaire and the Brief Infant Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment when children were 24 months corrected age (range, 24 months–27 months). The children were subsequently assessed by using the cognitive and language scales of the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, Third Edition (Bayley-III).
An average Bayley-III, cognitive and language (CB-III) score and a total PARCA-R Parent Report Composite (PRC) score were computed. There was a large association between PRC and CB-III scores (r = 0.66, P < .001) indicating good concurrent validity. Using Youden index, the optimum PARCA-R cutoff for identifying children with moderate/severe developmental delay (CB-III scores < 80) was PRC scores < 73. This gave sensitivity 0.90 (95% confidence interval: 0.75–1.00) and specificity 0.76 (95% confidence interval: 0.70–0.82), indicating good diagnostic utility. Approximately two-thirds of the children who had a PRC score < 73 had false-positive screens. However, these children had significantly poorer cognitive and behavioral outcomes than children with true negative screens.
The PARCA-R has good concurrent validity with a gold standard developmental test and can be used to identify LMPT infants who may benefit from a clinical assessment. The PARCA-R has potential for clinical use as a first-line cognitive screening tool for this sizeable population of infants in whom follow-up may be beneficial.