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Evidence Based Adolescent Health

Inflammatory Bowel Disease: A State of the Art Review

posted 3 Sep 2017, 14:30 by Damian Wood

A state of the art review in the BMJ updates the diagnosis and management of inflammatory bowel disease in children and young people. Inflammatory bowel diseases are lifelong conditions that often commence in adolescence. IBD is of particular importance in young  people because of the potential negative effects on growth, development and psychosocial wellbeing. The authors review how to achieve sustained control of intestinal inflammation and monitor for potential complications of the disease and side effects of therapies. 

Intervention for Adolescent Obesity ineffective

posted 3 Sep 2017, 14:22 by Damian Wood

The results of a trial of an obesity intervention for young people (the HELP programme) published in the August 2017 edition of Arch Dis Child are disappointing and highlight the challenge of developing effective treatments. The scale of the obesity problem is not in doubt, however, how best to address obesity in young adolescence is less clear. 

Easily Missed: Measles in Adolescents and Young Adults

posted 25 Feb 2017, 02:43 by Damian Wood

A short practice review in the BMJ by Dr Beatrice Cockbain and colleagues highlights the importance of measles infection in older children and adults. The review considers issues of recognition and diagnosis, immunisation history, laboratory diagnosis, public health notification, management and prevention.

Measles in older children and adults BMJ 2017; 356 doi:

Early puberty link with ethnicity, adiposity and psychosocial stress

posted 23 Feb 2017, 15:12 by Damian Wood   [ updated 23 Feb 2017, 15:12 ]

Using data from the UK Millenium Cohort Study Prof Yvonne Kelly and colleagues from University College London examine the associations between early puberty in adolescent girls and ethnicity, adiposity and psychosocial stress. Their study reveals that in the UK girls from socioeconomically disadvantaged groups and some ethnic minority groups are most likely to have early onset puberty. Their modelling for associations revealed excess adiposity and psychosocial stress among girls from low income backgrounds was associated with early onset puberty, and that poverty and adiposity were associated, to varying degrees, with early puberty in girls from Pakistani, Bangladeshi and black African backgrounds. This study adds significantly to our understanding of current trends in the timing of the onset of puberty, but still many questions remain unanswered and in an accompanying editorial Dr Ken Ong, Cambridge University reflects on how the work of Prof Kelly and colleagues informs our understanding of the biological and environmental forces which influence the timing of puberty.

Ong KK What triggers puberty? Archives of Disease in Childhood 2017;102:209-210

Kelly Y, Zilanawala A, Sacker A, et al Early puberty in 11-year-old girls: Millennium Cohort Study findings Archives of Disease in Childhood 2017;102:232-237.

Teen mobile screen time link with obesity

posted 27 Jan 2017, 00:09 by Damian Wood   [ updated 27 Jan 2017, 00:10 ]

Too much television time has long been linked to childhood obesity, but a U.S. study suggests that the connection holds true for smaller screens too, such as computers, gaming consoles, tablets and smartphones. With TV, a minimum five-hour-a-day habit increased the odds of obesity by 78 percent compared with teens who didn't have TV time, the study found. Such heavy use of other screens was tied to a 43 percent greater risk of obesity, researchers report in the Journal of Pediatrics.  READ MORE

News item courtesy of SAHM Adolescent News Round Up and Reuters

Coeliac disease has small but discernible impact on adolescent growth

posted 24 Jan 2017, 14:33 by Damian Wood

In a paper from Assa et at Tel-Aviv University, published in the February 2017 edition of Archives of Disease in Childhood, researchers studying 17 year olds undergoing medical examination prior to enlistment for national service found that adolescent girls diagnosed with coeliac disease (CD) have lower height compared with the general population while boys have significantly lower weight and BMI. However they concluded that final weight and height near the end of adolescence are not severely impaired in subjects with diagnosed CD. The also noted that the prevalence of diagnosed CD among Jewish adolescents is gradually increasing reaching 1.1% in 2015.

Physical health in adolescence strongly influences educational attainment

posted 9 Sep 2016, 10:28 by Damian Wood

It is well known that children from poorer families have a higher risk of developing chronic health conditions and that ill health has a significant negative effect on labour force participation in adults. In Arch Dis Child this month Emily Callender and colleagues explore the impact of household income, and physical and mental health in adolescence on education attainment, household income and health status in adulthood. The data shows that physical health in adolescence has a stronger influence on education attainment in adulthood than household income. 

Arch Dis Child 2016;101:825-831 doi:10.1136/archdischild-2015-309721

Managing eating disorders on a paediatric ward

posted 9 Sep 2016, 10:20 by Damian Wood

Karen Street and colleagues describe their model of care for young people with restrictive eating disorders on a paediatric ward. 

Arch Dis Child 2016;101:836-838 doi:10.1136/archdischild-2016-310506

Long term effects of chemotherapy in teenagers and young adults

posted 9 Sep 2016, 08:02 by Damian Wood

In this weeks BMJ there is a clinical update for generalists on the long term effects of anticancer chemotherapy in teenagers and young adults. 
BMJ 2016; 354 doi: 
BMJ 2016;354:i4567

Fifteen-minute consultation: Adolescent public health

posted 6 Jul 2016, 06:33 by Damian Wood

In this month's Arch Dis Childhood Dougal Hargreaves and colleagues provide worked examples of how adolescent public health can be incorporated into clinical practice. Paediatricians have a key role to play in ensuring a holistic, integrated approach is taken to meeting adolescent health needs. There is increasing evidence that failure to do so can lead to poor healthcare experience, avoidable ill health and increased need for healthcare services, both in the short term and in adult life. This article aims to guide paediatricians in answering the questions ‘How well are the public health and clinical needs of the adolescent population in my area being met? And how can we improve?’

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