Weekly Updates in Pediatrics         November 28, 2012 

EDITOR:  Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP 


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Neuropsychological function at 7 years of age in moderately preterm infants (MPT) (32-35 wks. gestation)  

A comparative study of neuropsychological functions of full term and moderately preterm infants at 7 years of age indicates that MPT birth is associated with lower intelligence and poorer neuropsychological functioning at early school age. No differences between the two groups for motor skills and verbal memory are present. Preterm boys "catch up" better than girls


Source:  Pediatrics

Effects of iron supplementation on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in children

"Iron is an essential mineral that helps regulate the activity of dopamine, a neurotransmitter involved in the regulation of mood and attention." Iron deficiency has been suggested as a contributing cause of ADHD.


A small study of 23 non anemic ADHD children (aged 5-8 years) were randomized to receive either oral iron or placebo for 12 weeks and the effects on their symptomatology examined, using a variety of methodologies.

Iron supplementation possibly improves ADHD symptoms in children with low serum ferritin levels. A larger study is needed! (ED JW).


Source:  Pediatric Neurology

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Inter-observer Agreement of Apgar Scoring

There appears to be significant variability in the professional measurement of the Apgar score. 335 neonatologists participated in a survey showed excellent agreement when noting full term infants' respiratory efforts, grimace and muscle tone at 1 and 5 minutes. For preterm infants significant disagreements occurred at 1, 5, and 10 minutes of life.


An improved delivery room score is needed to accurately reflect the clinical status of newborns born prematurely.

Source: Pediatrics

Video Feature
APGAR - The Newborn Assessment
APGAR - The Newborn Assessment
ECU via YouTube 

Impact of watching cartoons for distraction during painful procedures   


For Crying Out Loud! A study which examined the effect of cartoon ("Barney") watching on young children's pain measured prior to, during, and after a painful procedure, and older children watching a "Tarzan" cartoon, illustrates the benefits of cartoon watching for children during an acute painful procedure.


Source:   Pediatric Emergency Care   

Incidence of chronic bilirubin encephalopathy (CBE) in Canada

In spite of screening guidelines to identify infants at risk for hyperbilirubinemic encephalopathy, 20 cases in a 2 year period (2007-2008) were identified in Canada. Most causes included infants with glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency (n=5), sepsis (n=2), ABO incompatibility and other red cell antibodies (7).


Source:  Pediatrics 

Parent-based intervention of toddlers at risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders


Low intensity parent-implemented interventions (1 hour/week therapist contact) over a 12 week period, aimed at enhancing child-centered responsive interaction, do not appear to generate greater benefit to toddlers with Autism Spectrum Disorder, compared to normal ongoing community program.


Source:  Child & Adolescent Psychiatry 

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