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INTRODUCTION - In 2013, our institution established a multidisciplinary pediatric neurovascular conference for coordination of care. Here, we review our initial experience.
METHODS - Clinical and demographic data were obtained from medical records for patients presented to the pediatric neurovascular conference from April 2013 to July 2014. Patient descriptive characteristics were described by mean and standard deviation for continuous measures and by number and percent for categorical measures. Patients were secondarily stratified by lesion/disease type, and descriptive statistics were used to measure demographic and clinical variables.
RESULTS - The pediatric neurovascular conference met 26 times in the study period. Overall, 75 children were presented to the conference over a 15-month period. The mean age was 9.8 (standard deviation, 6.3) years. There were 42 (56%) male patients. These 75 children were presented a total of 112 times. There were 28 (37%) patients with history of stroke. Complex vascular lesions were the most frequently discussed entity; of 62 children (83%) with a diagnosed vascular lesion, brain arteriovenous malformation (29%), cavernous malformation (15%), and moyamoya (11%) were most common. Most discussions were for review of imaging (35%), treatment plan formulation (27%), the need for additional imaging (25%), or diagnosis (13%). Standardized care protocols for arteriovenous malformation and moyamoya were developed.
CONCLUSION - A multidisciplinary conference among a diverse group of providers guides complex care decisions, helps standardize care protocols, promotes provider collaboration, and supports continuity of care in pediatric neurovascular disease.
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
PURPOSE - Bullying has become a social plague associated with various deleterious outcomes. We hypothesized that pediatric lower urinary tract symptoms could be associated with exposure to bullying.
MATERIALS AND METHODS - We assessed exposure to school bullying via the Setting the Record Straight bullying questionnaire in children 8 to 11 years old being evaluated for lower urinary tract symptoms at our pediatric urology clinic. Lower urinary tract symptoms were quantified with the Vancouver Symptom Score. Children 8 to 11 years old presenting for pediatric well visits also completed the questionnaires. Linear regression assessed the relationship between Vancouver Symptom Score and bullying score. Categorical variables were compared by chi-square test, while continuous variables were compared using the Student t-test.
RESULTS - A total of 113 children at the urology clinic and 63 children in the primary care setting consented to participate. There were significant differences between the 2 populations, including gender and race, with significantly more perpetrators of bullying in the primary care group (7.9% vs 0.9%, p = 0.02). When looking specifically at the urology group, there was a significant association between Vancouver Symptom Score and self-perceived (p <0.001) and peer perceived (p <0.001) victimization scores. In the primary care group there was also a significant association between Vancouver Symptom Score and self-perceived (p = 0.01) and peer perceived (p = 0.001) bullying perpetrator scores. Of children seen at the primary care office 33% had a significant Vancouver Symptom Score.
CONCLUSIONS - Although bullying exposure is multifactorial, we found that Vancouver Symptom Score can be associated with bullying victimization and perpetrator scores.
Copyright © 2015 American Urological Association Education and Research, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - Extensive patient and family education is required at the time of a new diagnosis of pediatric cancer yet little data exist regarding the availability and linguistic competency of new cancer diagnosis education provided by pediatric oncology institutions.
PROCEDURE - Using the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology (ASPHO) membership list, a web-based survey was conducted among a cohort of pediatric oncologists to determine pediatric oncologists' assessment of institutional resources for new cancer diagnosis education and the availability of linguistically appropriate education.
RESULTS - Of 1,294 ASPHO members sent email survey invitations, 573 (44.3%) responded with 429 meeting eligibility criteria. Oncologists at academic institutions reported their institutions had more availability of resources for new diagnosis education compared with those from non-academic institutions (mean 78.6 vs. 74.3; 0 [not at all]-100 [well equipped]; P = 0.05). The mean score increased with volume of new cancer diagnoses/year: small (<75) = 73.4; medium (75-149) = 76.7; large (>150) = 84.5 (P < 0.001). Oncologists at large volume institutions reported more availability of an established patient education protocol (50.8% vs. 38.1%, P < 0.001) and increased use of dedicated non-physician staff (79.9% vs. 66.1%, P = 0.02), but less use of websites for patient education (17.2% vs. 33.3%, P = 0.001). Availability of linguistically appropriate education improved with increasing institution size: small (76.4), medium (82.3), and large (84.0) patient volume (P < 0.011).
CONCLUSION - According to pediatric oncologists, a disparity in educational and linguistic resources for new pediatric cancer diagnosis education exists depending on institution type and size.
© 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
PURPOSE - The voiding cystourethrogram (VCUG) is a common imaging test in pediatric urology that can be associated with anxiety in the child and parent. We hypothesized that education by mailed brochure would decrease pre-procedure parental anxiety.
METHODS - Families of children scheduled for VCUG were randomized into an experimental group that was mailed an educational brochure about the VCUG and a control group. Immediately prior to the procedure, parental anxiety was assessed with the self-administered State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). The parent repeated the STAI at home after the VCUG and answered brief questions about educational resources used to prepare for the VUCG.
RESULTS - We enrolled 105 families (47 experimental, 58 control). Parental state anxiety was higher before the procedure than after the procedure (p < 0.001). Younger parents had greater pre-procedure state anxiety (p = 0.007). Contrary to our expectations, pre-procedure state anxiety did not differ between control and experimental groups. However, parents in the experimental group demonstrated less anxiety with some individual items in the questionnaire.
CONCLUSION - An educational brochure mailed to families prior to VCUG did not decrease pre-procedure parental state anxiety. However, the educational brochure can ensure accurate dissemination of information to help families prepare for this potentially distressing procedure.
Copyright © 2013 Journal of Pediatric Urology Company. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - The current research environment for academic surgeons demands that extramural funding be obtained. Financial support from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is historically the gold standard for funding in the biomedical research community, with the R01 funding mechanism viewed as indicator of research independence. The NIH also supports a mentor-based career development mechanism (K-series awards) in order to support early-stage investigators. The goal of this study was to investigate the grants successfully awarded to pediatric surgeon-scientists and then determine the success of the K-series award recipients at achieving research independence.
METHODS - In July 2012, all current members of the American Pediatric Surgery Association (APSA) were queried in the NIH database from 1988-2012 through the NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools. The following factors were analyzed: type of grant, institution, amount of funding, and funding institute or center.
RESULTS - Among current APSA members, there have been 83 independent investigators receiving grants, representing 13% of the current APSA membership, with 171 independent grants funded through various mechanisms. Six percent currently have active NIH funding, with $7.2 million distributed in 2012. There have been 28 K-series grants awarded. Of the recipients of expired K08 awards, 39% recipients were subsequently awarded an R01 grant. A total of 63% of these K-awarded investigators transitioned to an independent NIH award mechanism.
CONCLUSIONS - Pediatric surgeon-scientists successfully compete for NIH funding. Our data suggest that although the K-series funding mechanism is not the only path to research independence, over half of the pediatric surgeons who receive a K-award are successful in the transition to independent investigator.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
INTRODUCTION - Pediatric asthma exacerbations account for >1.8 million emergency department (ED) visits annually. Asthma guidelines are intended to guide time-dependent treatment decisions that improve clinical outcomes; however, guideline adherence is inadequate. We examined whether an automatic disease detection system increases clinicians' use of paper-based guidelines and decreases time to a disposition decision.
METHODS - We evaluated a computerized asthma detection system that triggered NHLBI-adopted, evidence-based practice to improve care in an urban, tertiary care pediatric ED in a 3-month (7/09-9/09) prospective, randomized controlled trial. A probabilistic system screened all ED patients for acute asthma. For intervention patients, the system generated the asthma protocol at triage for intervention patients to guide early treatment initiation, while clinicians followed standard processes for control patients. The primary outcome measures included time to patient disposition.
RESULTS - The system identified 1100 patients with asthma exacerbations, of which 704 had a final asthma diagnosis determined by a physician-established reference standard. The positive predictive value for the probabilistic system was 65%. The median time to disposition decision did not differ among the intervention (289 min; IQR = (184, 375)) and control group (288 min; IQR = (185, 375)) (p=0.21). The hospital admission rate was unchanged between intervention (37%) and control groups (35%) (p = 0.545). ED length of stay did not differ among the intervention (331 min; IQR = (226, 581)) and control group (331 min; IQR = (222, 516)) (p = 0.568).
CONCLUSION - Despite a high level of support from the ED leadership and staff, a focused education effort, and implementation of an automated disease detection, the use of the paper-based asthma protocol remained low and time to patient disposition did not change.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.