Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Kids with Chronic Conditions

More kids are being diagnosed with chronic conditions. This article basically says you should take your kids to the doctor more often. It doesn't say why kids have more chronic conditions. Is it toxins in the environment? Parents with bad eating habits? I could go on and on with the possibilities. The last line of this article says boys with obese mothers are more likely to have a chronic condition. Why is that? Isn't that strange. Boys are also more likely to have autism and a plethora of other illnesses. Of course, I have three boys so I pay attention to these things. Has anyone noticed more kids having chronic conditions?

FROM NBC: Chronic health conditions like obesity, asthma, and ongoing physical and mental challenges are described as affecting a child's ability to do things other children their age can do or requires ongoing treatment by a physician lasting more than a year.
A new study shows while chronic conditions are increasing for u.s. children, over time many of these conditions improve and often go away.

Jakob Martinson, now two, was diagnosed with a weak airway shortly after birth. Today his chronic condition still requires a trach tube to help his breathing.
Lauren Martinson - Jakob's Mother: "When we first brought him home we had to have a video shown to anyone who had any contact with him that would watch him, at all, so they could learn what to expect from a trach, to learn how to suction him, how to take care of him." Jakob is not alone. The numbers of children and their families who deal with physical and behavioral chronic conditions nationwide are increasing.

Jeanne Van Cleave, M.D., - MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Boston:
"We found that obesity was especially prevalent, asthma is prevalent as well, learning behavior disorders are also prevalent other chronic conditions that were included in the study are increasing in rates as well." Dr. Jeanne Van Cleave from mass general hospital for children, in Boston and Co-authors studied three nationally representative groups of children, age two through eight from 1988 to 2006. each group was followed for up to six years. Jeanne Van Cleave, M.D., - MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Boston: "Children we studied in the late 80's had rates of chronic conditions over the course of childhood of about 30 percent and this has increased to about 50 percent in the recent years."

Jeanne Van Cleave, M.D., - MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Boston "The most surprising thing was that half of the chronic conditions in our study population eventually resolved, we didn't think that we would find that because of our notion of chronic conditions being somewhat more permanent than what we saw in the study." Lauren Martinson - Jakob's Mother "For chronic conditions there's always a light at the end of the road."

Jeanne Van Cleave, M.D., - MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Boston "It really speaks to the need for children to have ongoing care especially with a primary care physician's office, where a lot of these conditions are detected and treated."

Researchers say that being a boy and also having an obese mother were associated with children having a chronic condition.

The study appears in this week's JAMA, Journal of the American Medical Association.

-NewsAnchorMom Jen

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