Eating Disorders in Children Tied to Serious Health Consequences

By Doctors Lounge

Eating Disorder in ChildrenThe incidence of early-onset restrictive eating disorders is 2.6 cases per 100,000 person-years in children, is increased in girls, and can result in serious medical consequences, according to a study published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) — The incidence of early-onset restrictive eating disorders is 2.6 cases per 100,000 person-years in children, is increased in girls, and can result in serious medical consequences, according to a study published in the October issue of theArchives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

Full story at Doctors Lounge

Pressing for better quality across healthcare

By Noam N. Levey

Dr. Donald Berwick On Better Health Care SystemReporting from Atlanta—

The cardiac intensive care unit at Egleston Children’s Hospital in Atlanta gleams and hums with a dazzling array of scientific wonders that breathe for tiny lungs and monitor every beat of an infant heart.

But on a recent visit, Dr. Donald Berwick was especially pleased by something decidedly low-tech: a quiet zone where nurses can place medication orders without being interrupted, even during emergencies.

Hospital leaders created the zone — little more than a computer terminal in a corner of the room behind an orange sign on the floor that reads “Shh … We’re in the MedZone” — two years ago after noticing that distracted staff members were making dangerous mistakes when ordering medicine.

The deceptively simple system, built on a principle used in aviation, cut medication errors by two-thirds, saving money and lives.

Full story at Los Angeles Times

An Addiction Vaccine, Tantalizingly Close

By Douglas Quenqua

Addiction VaccineSAN DIEGO — Imagine a vaccine against smoking: People trying to quit would light up a cigarette and feel nothing. Or a vaccine against cocaine, one that would prevent addicts from enjoying the drug’s high.

Though neither is imminent, both are on the drawing board, as are vaccines to combat other addictions. While scientists have historically focused their vaccination efforts on diseases like polio, smallpox and diphtheria — with great success — they are now at work on shots that could one day release people from the grip of substance abuse.

“We view this as an alternative or better way for some people,” said Dr. Kim D. Janda, a professor at the Scripps Research Institute who has made this his life’s work. “Just like with nicotine patches and the gum, all those things are just systems to get people off the drugs.”

Full story at New York Times

Ballet’s Gritty Inside Story

By Sophia Hollander

Ballet's Story of Eating DisordersThe ethereal beauty of ballet depends in part on not acknowledging the grit, sweat and gnarled feet that make it possible—especially among the unknown dancers in the corps de ballet who gracefully toil in the ballerinas’ shadows.

On Oct. 10, one of those unsung performers will step forward with a fictionalized insider’s account of that underdog experience.

“Bunheads,” a young-adult novel written by former corps dancer Sophie Flack, depicts a world where the characters’ most intimate friends are also their greatest obstacles to success. The dancers are ravaged by eating disorders and riven with questions over what must be sacrificed to succeed—even as they relish moments of exceptional beauty.

Full story at Wall Street Journal

Teen Use of ADHD Meds Up Sharply

By Nancy Walsh

ADHD-drugsThe use of stimulant medications among children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) continues to rise, particularly among adolescents, a nationally representative survey showed.

In 2008, these medications were used by 3.5% (95% CI 3.0 to 4.1) of children ages 18 and younger compared with 2.4% (95% CI 1.8 to 2.9) in 1996, according to Samuel H. Zuvekas, PhD, of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality in Rockville, Md., and Benedetto Vitiello, MD, of the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Md.

But among those ages 13 to 18, the rate of use increased by 6.5% annually, rising from 2.3% (95% CI 1.5 to 3.1) in 1996 and reaching 5% (95% CI 3.9 to 6.1) by 2008 (P<0.001), the researchers reported online in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Full story at Med Page Today