What’s new in the world of Paediatrics?

As a broad-based speciality, paediatrics allows doctors to become generalists in managing medical conditions affecting babies, children and young people. As we live in an era where the advancement of medicine is a daily occurrence, paediatricians need to be aware of all the latest research as new evidence becomes available in their speciality.
Here is a round up some of the latest published findings and studies in this ever-changing field of medicine.
Updated guidelines for evaluation of the visual system in children
The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement with updated guidelines to aid pediatricians in the assessment of the visual system in infants, children, and adolescents. Changes from previous guidelines include recommendations for instrument-based screening beginning at age 12 months and preference of HOTV or LEA charts over other charts for assessment of visual acuity in young children.
Outcomes of weight loss surgery for adolescents
Weight loss surgery is an important option for managing severe obesity in adolescents. In the past, this approach was based on outcomes in adults and on retrospective case series in adolescents. Now, a prospective study provides robust evidence for beneficial outcomes of weight loss surgery in adolescents. Among 242 adolescents with severe obesity undergoing weight loss surgery, body mass index (BMI) decreased by 27 percent at three years of follow-up. Weight loss was similar for those undergoing gastric bypass compared with sleeve gastrectomy. Surgery also resulted in improved quality of life and resolution or improvement of comorbidities, including type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and abnormal kidney function.
E-cigarette use and use of combustible tobacco products
Studies have associated e-cigarette use with an increased risk of conventional cigarette smoking among youth. A recent study compared ninth-grade students who had never used a combustible tobacco product with students who had ever used e-cigarettes with never users. Compared with never users, ever users of e-cigarettes were more likely to report use of any combustible tobacco product at both 6-month (31 versus 8 percent) and 12-month (25 versus 9 percent) follow-up.
Antibiotic use and development of juvenile idiopathic arthritis
A study has found that any use of antibiotics was associated with a twofold-increased risk of found a link between antibiotic use and the development of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). The risk was dose dependent and was greatest for antibiotic exposures that occurred within one year of diagnosis.
Effectiveness of pertussis vaccine in infants
Infants younger than 12 months have the highest incidence of pertussis and pertussis-related complications, including death. In one study, having received ?1 dose of pertussis vaccine was associated with a 72 percent reduction in the risk of death and a 31 percent reduction in the risk of hospitalization in infants ?6 weeks of age (the minimum age for the first dose of pertussis vaccine).

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