May 2017  

Welcome to the May edition of CanChild TodayIn this issue, we are proud to announce the release of a new video introduction to the ACSF:SC tool, with a special request for your feedback.  Additionally,  we are pleased to share that our first youth-led CP-NET webinar,  " Growing up with CP: Mental health & well-being ", is now available to view online!

Please feel free to share CanChild resources and this newsletter with family, friends and colleagues. They can subscribe to the CanChild Today Newsletter for free by registering   here . Our past issues are archived on the CanChild website and can be accessed here!  
New Video! 
The ACSF:SC: An Introduction

CanChild is proud to announce the release of an introductory video for the ACSF:SC tool!
Designed to answer basic questions about the ACSF:SC, this video explains aspects such as the tool's purpose, the five levels, and how a child is scored.

The ACSF:SC team is eager to hear your thoughts on this video! After watching, please complete a short survey here:

New CP-NET Webinar!
Growing up with CP: Mental health & well-being 

Presented on April 21, 2017 by Jessica Geboers, Georgia Beauchemin and Jan Willem Gorter. Moderated by Julia Hanes. 

While challenges with body movement is the key feature of cerebral palsy, it is important to recognize that the experience of living with CP goes well beyond these physical, visible effects. Teens and young adults with CP and other disabilities are more likely than their peers without disabilities to develop mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety.

CP-NET is proud to share " Growing up with CP: Mental Health & Well-being", a webinar initiated and led by young adults for young adults. Highlighting both lived experience and recent research from the CP-NET MyStory project, this webinar explores the intersection of mental health and CP, and discusses how we can better support young people in developing positive outcomes in mental health and well-being.

CP-NET is an Integrated Discovery Program carried out in partnership with the Ontario Brain Institute.

Save the Date!
CP-NET Science & Family Day 2017!

CP-NET Science & Family Day
Friday, October 6, 2017
Hamilton, ON

Mark your calendars! The 4th Annual CP-NET Science & Family Day is set for Friday, October 6, 2017 (World CP Day). We are excited to announce that this year's celebration will take place in Hamilton, ON. 

Stay tuned for details! 
News & Congratulations!

Congratulations to CanChild PhD candidate Michelle Phoenix on receiving the 2017 Isabel Richard Student Paper Award (Doctoral Level), presented by Speech-Language and Audiology Canada (SAC). Read more.

CanChild Scientist Mark Ferro has been granted an Early Research Award from the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation (MRI), for his research on rates and determinants of psychiatric readmission of youth. Read more.
Peter Rosenbaum photo
The Health Sciences Graduate Students Federation at McMaster University presented CanChild Co-founder Peter Rosenbaum with an Excellence in Graduate Supervision Award on May 31, in recognition of hisoutstanding mentorship and supervision of graduate students. 
Recent Publications by CanChild Members
Child- and parent-reported quality of life trajectories in children with epilepsy: A prospective cohort study.
Understanding factors behind quality of life (QoL) and health outcomes is crucial for clinical activities in engagement and intervention study structure. For children with epilepsy, these factors may help explain why only certain individuals report satisfactory outcomes. Authors asked (1) are there differences between child- and parent-reported epilepsy-specific QoL? and, (2) what factors contribute to QoL?  Believed to be the first study to analyze child-reported data, emphasis by children on certain factors from a 28-month prospective cohort study infers a need to combine child- and parent-reported information. Results also show direct and indirect associations with family and peer support, child mental health, and QoL, and suggests that psychosocial factors are more influential than seizure and AED-specific factors. The study illustrates the importance of multidisciplinary family-centered care strategies and regular screenings, implementing resources such as cognitive therapies to improve mental health. School-based epilepsy education programs are able to increase positive attitudes and support among classmates, and community support centers can also increase the accessibility of resources to families. Supporting parental health is also important to ensure children maintain a strong base of support throughout their lives. The authors conclude that factors subject to change should be the focus of interventions and that children  and parents can expect a stable or improving QoL over time.  Authors : Ferro MA , Avery L, Fayed N, Streiner DL, Cunningham CE, Boyle MH, Lach L , Glidden G, Rosenbaum PL , Ronen, GM , QUALITÉ group. Epilepsia. 2017 May 9. doi: 10.1111/epi.13774. [Epub ahead of print]

Children with cerebral palsy who are classified at Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS) Levels 1 and 2 may benefit from interventions which incorporate virtual reality (VR) systems to improve balance and gross motor skills. While VR systems that are specifically designed with certain rehabilitation goals in mind are available, off-the-shelf active video games (AVGs), such as Nintendo's Wii and WiiFit, are less expensive, more accessible, and provide a greater variety of games for players. To examine the use of AVGs, a pilot non-randomized controlled trail was held. One group of five children received one hour of VR training for five days, followed by a six week AVG program at home, which was supervised online by a physical therapist. The other group consisted of six children, who only completed the six week AVG program at home. The Gross Motor Function Measure Challenge Module (GMFM-CM) and Six Minute Walk Test (6MWT) were used to evaluate changes. The study found no statistically significant changes between the two groups. The group that only received the six week AVG program at home showed a statistically and clinically significant improvement in GMFM-CM scores, but the group who also received the VR training for five days demonstrated a statistically and clinically significant decrease in 6MWT distance. However, after two months post-intervention, all 6MWT scores returned to baseline. Authors:  Levac D, McCormick A, Levin MF, Brien M, Mills R, Miller E, Sveistrup H.  Phys Occup Ther Pediatr. 2017 Apr 4:1-14. doi: 10.1080/01942638.2017.1287810. [Epub ahead of print]

Organized sport and physical activity participation and body mass index in children and youth: A longitudinal study.
One of the most pressing health problems for today's children and youth in North America is unhealthy weight. Physical activity and sport participation has been recommended as a treatment and intervention for prevention and maintenance of healthy weight by the World Health Organization. Exercise has also been linked to children having a better understanding of recommended nutrition guidelines and healthy practices; however, researchers had not established a direct link between active participation and body mass index (BMI). In this paper, the authors analyzed the questions: (1) "is there a meaningful association between organized physical activity and BMI?" and, (2) "is there evidence for the direction of this relationship?" After analysis with three lagged mixed effects models of 2278 children from a six year prospective open cohort study, results concluded that the relationship between BMI and physical activity is bidirectional and relatively weak within the tested population. Parent overweight status, family socioeconomic status, birth weight, nutrition, and genetics are other potential influential factors. It was also noted that body mass may also influence participation through its effects on confidence, motivation, or performance. The authors concluded that BMI does not limit participation in organized sport activities and engaging in a sport can lead to many benefits to a child's health and development. Authors: Cairney J , Veldhuizen S. Prev Med Rep. 2017 Apr 13;6:336-338. doi: 10.1016/j.pmedr.2017.04.005. eCollection 2017 Jun.

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