Children's in the news

Here at Children’s Hospital Boston, our staff prides itself on providing world-class care for every patient that comes through our doors. But when they’re not busy performing surgeries, setting bones or caring for patients, many of our clinicians are doing research that will shape the future of pediatrics, or discussing how those changes will impact everyday care for thousands of people. Here’s a quick round up of what Children’s employees have been discussing with the media this past week.

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A safer and earlier way to determine if a fetus has Down syndrome is being studied

An article in The Los Angeles Times discusses new technology soon to be available that will allow women to know early in their pregnancy whether they are carrying a fetus with Down syndrome. Children’s Brian Skotko, MD, MPP, speaks with the paper about the new tests – which are noninvasive and will pose fewer risks to the mother and fetus than current prenatal testing—and the questions they raise.

Dr. Skotko wrote a similar piece for Thrive last week and has opened a wide debate on the subject of prenatal testing.

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Parents focus on kids’ diet but neglect their own

An article in USA Today describes parents who meticulously plan their children’s meals yet fail to prepare healthy meals for themselves. Children’s David Ludwig, MD, PhD, discusses the trend and why healthy eating habits are important for parents also.

Thrive recently reported on new USDA food guidelines. Parents looking to improve their diet, as well as their children’s, may want to see what the government recommends for healthy food choices.

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Turning skin cells into heart cells

Leonard Zon, MD, director of the Stem Cell Program at Children’s Hospital Boston, explains new findings in reprogramming stem cells.

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Is Autism an Epidemic?

Big Think” conducted a panel about the prevalence of autism and Children’s Christopher Walsh, MD, PhD, participated and discussed the prevalence of other high profile diseases.

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Few Outliers in Congenital Heart Surgery

Medpage Today reports that the Society of Thoracic Surgeons conducted the first national comparison of congenital heart defect surgical performance and concluded little variation among centers for all but the most complex procedures. Children’s John Mayer, MD, was a study discussant.