MCH Updates in Pediatrics Masthead  

                       Volume IV
                        Issue 22
                                                           South Florida's  only licensed  free-standing
                                                             specialty hospital  exclusively for children ...                                                      May 29, 2013 
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FIU Tile Ad April 2013  

Are "hookups" replacing "romantic relationships" in late adolescence?

The prevalence and frequency of "hookups" (wide variety of definitions, frequently associated with sexual activity in the absence of love) or sexual activity within the confines of a romantic relationship, were surveyed in 483 first-year female college students (mean age 18.1 years).


40% of sexual (oral or vaginal) "hookups" occur during the first year of college compared to 56% of sexual contact associated with romantic partners. "Hookup" sex is less common than that associated with a romantic relationship.


Journal of Adolescent Health

Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) in syncope in children

Of 52 children and adolescents hospitalized for syncope, 37% have a cardiac etiology (arrhythmias or structural cardiac/cardiopulmonary disease) which is associated with significantly higher levels of BMP than those with non-cardiac (primarily autonomic-mediated reflex syncope) disease.


Serum BMP is helpful in differentiating cardiac syncope from other causes.


Acta Paediatrica

Pregnancy associated hypertension & temperament in infancy

Mothers diagnosed with gestational hypertension and preeclampsia are more likely (compared to a normal matched group) to report that at 1 year of age their infants had a difficult temperament (adjusting for cofounders), based on a validated Toddled Temperament Scale.


Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics 

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Effects of delayed cord clamping on neurodevelopment/infection at 4 months of age  


A prospective trial randomizing 382 full term infants to delayed (>180 secs.) or early (<10 secs.) cord clamping was undertaken to assess neurodevelopment, serum IgG level and parent recorded symptoms indicating infection during the first 4 months of life.


Overall, delaying clamping of the cord does not appear to affect neurodevelopment (though specific domains maybe impacted), IgG level or symptoms of infection during the first four months of life.


Acta Paediatrica 

Video Feature
Restless Leg Syndrome
Restless Leg Syndrome
 via YouTube

Early onset Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) & oral iron treatment


RLS is a neurological sensory motor disease (first described in 1672), which frequently causes sleep disturbances and affects the quality of life of sufferers. Its expression is influenced by genetic, environmental and medical factors.


Symptoms and severity vary widely and may disappear for a while. Briefly summarized, it appears that for adults/older children five criteria need to be fulfilled to diagnose RLS:

  1.  An urge to move the legs, usually with an uncomfortable sensation in the legs.
  2. The urge, usually, occurs when at rest, sitting or lying down.
  3. Walking or stretching generally results in partial or total relief.
  4. Symptoms mostly are worse in the evening or at night.
  5. No other medical or behavioral condition is present.

If the child cannot (or is too young to) describe the symptoms of RLS then at least two of the following are required:

  1. Abnormal sleep disturbances.
  2. A close family history of a patient with RLS.
  3. A polysomnogram which documents periodic abnormal limb movement.

22 children (0-14 months of age) diagnosed with RLS and a low ferritin level and who presented primarily with waking after 1-3 hours of sleep screaming, crying, kicking or hitting the legs received oral iron therapy. Significant improvement in limb movement occurred with treatment.


Acta Paediatrica 

Inhaled steroids & bone density


"Prolonged use of corticosteroids is a risk factor for osteoporosis".  The effect of inhaled steroids on bone density of asthmatic patients remains controversial.


A study of 85 mild to moderate asthmatic children (1.4-17 years of age) on inhaled corticosteroids (for approximately 1.5 years) had tibial bone density measured (Sunlight Omnisense 7000S).


Prolonged inhaled steroid therapy appears to have no deleterious effect on tibial bone density.


Acta Paediatrica 

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