It’s scary being a parent, especially a first-time parent. I mean, talk about the responsibility: an actual human being is relying on you for survival. And basically, you have no idea what you are doing. Sometimes, it seems amazing that our species has made it this far.
So…why not turn to technology? Why not wire your baby up and monitor their breathing and heart rate and movement? I mean, if doctors and hospitals do it, it’s got to be a good idea, right?
Not so much. Full story »
What happens when an adrenaline-addicted athlete slows down?
Julia Marino thrives at high speed and from great heights. In 2009, 17-year-old Julia was at the top of her game. Coaches and fellow slopestyle skiers had pegged her as a rising star on the World Cup circuit. Salomon, a top winter sports gear manufacturer, had signed on as her sponsor. Then, during the first event of the season, she crashed.
Crashes are common in slopestyle. Skiers hit jumps at speeds up to 35 miles per hour, flying up to 50 feet in the air to perform aerial tricks.
Julia landed awkwardly on one ski, heard a resounding pop in her left knee and felt the “most intense pain” of her life. She braced herself and skied to the medical tent.
The on-mountain medical crew insisted she wasn’t injured. But Julia and her mother doubted the diagnosis. Full story »
The NICU at Boston Children's Hospital in 1976
Thirty years ago, no one would have expected babies born extremely prematurely—between 23 and 25 weeks’ gestation, considered the edge of viability—to survive long enough to worry about what the future might hold for them as third graders.
But times change. Treatments like surfactants and prenatal steroids, along with improvements in ventilators and nutrition, have often enabled children born in that “gray zone” to survive.
Thus, doctors and parents now can start to ask questions about the long-term development of extremely premature babies. How will he do—physically, cognitively, intellectually—in the long run? What impairments might she face, and how severe will they be? Full story »
Between the near constant worry and strict monitoring of every type of food in the area, parenting a child with food allergy can be nerve-wracking and exhausting.
And according to research published by JAMA Pediatrics, it can also be extremely expensive.
The data shows pediatric food allergies cost an estimated $24.8 billion each year in the U.S, with a majority of that money coming from lost wages and missed career opportunities of the parents of children with food allergies whose jobs take a back seat to managing their child’s condition.
“A child’s food allergy often affects more than just his or her physical health, it impacts the whole family in a number of ways,” says John Lee, MD, director of Boston Children’s Hospital Food Allergy Program. “Depending on the severity of the allergy, keeping the child healthy can be more demanding and time consuming than a full-time job, leaving some parents with little time for employment.” Full story »
Happy Thanksgiving! We recently asked our patient families what they were most thankful for this year, and the responses we received were heartfelt and beautiful. However you spend this special week—celebrating Thanksgiving, Hanukkah or both—we hope you’re able to find a few moments of peace for yourself and your family, and together enjoy the things that you’re thankful for.
I’m thankful for the cardiac team that kept my baby healthy before and after her emergency Tetralogy of Fallot repair this month! Could not have asked for better caregivers for my baby girl!
This year, my family is thankful for a happy, inquisitive, sweet, quirky, loving, (but most importantly healthy) toddler! A year ago, we questioned what life would be like after his Hirschsprung’s Disease diagnosis and THANKS to Boston’s Children’s Hospital we get to share and enjoy life with our wonderful little boy! We can’t wait to see what his future holds!
I’m thankful that Boston Children’s Hospital helped me go from 400 pounds to 235 pounds and still losing! Without the weight loss, my son would have never been conceived.
We are thankful to be Boston Children’s Hospital parents, because they saved our son’s life. Boston Children’s was involved with his heart even before he was born, as he had a fetal intervention when I was 29 weeks pregnant. They handled the surgery and procedures after birth, and now he is a thriving little four-year-old boy.
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“When asked to conjure an image of a patient living with an eating disorder, I imagine many people picture a young, thin woman. This reflects two common stereotypes: that eating disorders only affect women, and that all people with eating disorders are low-weighted. In fact, clinical experience and an evolving field of research show that many males struggle with eating disorders,” says Scott Hadland, MD, MPH, fellow in Adolescent Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital.
Similarly, parents and health care providers may see gay, lesbian and bisexual youth in terms of their sexual identities and forget that these teens may face body image and weight control issues as well.
Two recent studies published by researchers at Boston Children’s debunk these stereotypes and may change the way parents and providers think about eating disorders and risky weight control behaviors in all teens. Full story »
Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for family, friends and great food. This year, try making healthier alternatives to some of your favorite holiday dishes. The staff at Preventive Cardiology Program at Boston Children’s Hospital has researched some delicious and healthy recipes to put on your table this year. Remember, be creative and an extra side of vegetables never hurt anyone!
APPETIZER: Butternut Squash Soup
This year, instead of filling up on empty calories before the main meal, try eating a healthy soup!
- A single (2 to 3 pound) butternut squash, peeled and seeded
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 6 cups chicken stock
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper Full story »
Michael Rich, MD, MPH
Michael Rich, MD, MPH, is Boston Children’s Hospital’s media expert and director of Boston Children’s Center on Media and Child Health. Send him a media-related parenting question via email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @CMCH_Boston.
Last week, the New York Times featured an article entitled “Unlearning Gun Violence”, which discussed the work of an epidemiologist who, after a decade of fighting TB, HIV, and cholera in Africa, returned to a life-threatening epidemic in his hometown of Chicago—violence. He uses the same techniques that worked in Africa, teaching perpetrators and victims of violence to prevent recurrence of this deadly cycle. Such secondary and tertiary prevention is effective—but after the fact. Prevention of future violence can only happen after violence has occurred, identifying those at risk for aggression and victimization.
One day earlier, a research report in Pediatrics detailed the dramatic increase in gun violence in PG-13 movies, tripling over the past 3 decades. Movies that any child can watch (hopefully, but not necessarily with parental guidance) are now more violent than those that are restricted to those 17 or older unless accompanied by an adult. One day later, I was asked to present research in support of a bill in the Massachusetts Senate that would appoint an expert commission to study whether and how video games and other interactive media influence and teach their users. Full story »