PEDIATRICS recent issues

Neonatal Adiposity and Childhood Obesity

OBJECTIVES:

To explore the longitudinal association of neonatal adiposity (fat mass percentage) with BMI trajectories and childhood overweight and obesity from ages 2 to 6 years.

METHODS:

We studied 979 children from the Healthy Start cohort. Air displacement plethysmography was used to estimate fat mass percentage. Child weight and recumbent length or standing height were abstracted from medical records. Overweight and obesity were defined as BMI levels ≥85th percentile for age and sex. Mixed-effects models were used to examine the association between neonatal fat mass percentage and BMI trajectories from age 2 to 6 years. We tested for effect modification by sex, race and/or ethnicity, and breastfeeding duration. We estimated the proportion of children classified as overweight or obese at specific levels of neonatal fat mass percentage (mean ± SD).

RESULTS:

The mean neonatal adiposity level was 9.1% ± 4.0%. Child BMI levels differed by neonatal adiposity. Each SD increase in neonatal adiposity resulted in a 0.12 higher overall BMI level between ages 2 to 6 years (95% confidence interval: 0.03 to 0.20; P < .01), and this association was not modified by offspring sex, race and/or ethnicity, or breastfeeding duration. Increasing neonatal adiposity was associated with an increasing proportion of childhood overweight and obesity by age 5 years (P = .02).

CONCLUSIONS:

We provide novel evidence that higher neonatal adiposity is significantly associated with higher overall BMI levels and an increased likelihood of overweight or obesity from ages 2 to 6 years. Because various prenatal exposures may specifically influence offspring fat accretion, neonatal adiposity may be a useful surrogate end point for prenatal interventions aimed at reducing future childhood overweight and obesity.

Maternal Depression in Early Childhood and Developmental Vulnerability at School Entry

OBJECTIVES:

To assess the relation between exposure to maternal depression before age 5 and 5 domains of developmental vulnerability at school entry, overall, and by age at exposure.

METHODS:

This cohort study included all children born in Manitoba, Canada, who completed the Early Development Instrument between 2005 and 2016 (N = 52 103). Maternal depression was defined by using physician visits, hospitalizations, and pharmaceutical data; developmental vulnerability was assessed by using the Early Development Instrument. Relative risk of developmental vulnerability was assessed by using log-binomial regression models adjusted for characteristics at birth.

RESULTS:

Children exposed to maternal depression before age 5 had a 17% higher risk of having at least 1 developmental vulnerability at school entry than did children not exposed to maternal depression before age 5. Exposure to maternal depression was most strongly associated with difficulties in social competence (adjusted relative risk [aRR] = 1.28; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.20–1.38), physical health and well-being (aRR = 1.28; 95% CI: 1.20–1.36), and emotional maturity (aRR = 1.27; 95% CI: 1.18–1.37). For most developmental domains, exposure to maternal depression before age 1 and between ages 4 and 5 had the strongest association with developmental vulnerability.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our finding that children exposed to maternal depression are at higher risk for developmental vulnerability at school entry is consistent with previous findings. We extended this literature by documenting that the adverse effects of exposure to maternal depression are specific to particular developmental domains and that these effects vary depending on the age at which the child is exposed to maternal depression.

Clinical Prediction Rule for Distinguishing Bacterial From Aseptic Meningitis

BACKGROUND:

New biomarkers like procalcitonin and C-reactive protein may help design an accurate decision support tool used to identify children with pleocytosis at low or high risk of bacterial meningitis. Our objective was to develop and validate a score (that we call the meningitis score for emergencies [MSE]) to distinguish bacterial meningitis from aseptic meningitis in children with pleocytosis when initially evaluated at the emergency department.

METHODS:

We included children between 29 days and 14 years old with meningitis admitted to 25 Spanish emergency departments. A retrospective cohort from between 2011 and 2016 was used as the derivation set and a prospective cohort recruited during 2017 and 2018 was used as the validation set.

RESULTS:

Among the 1009 patients included, there were 917 cases of aseptic meningitis and 92 of bacterial meningitis. Using multivariable logistic regression analysis, we identified the following predictors of bacterial meningitis from the derivation set: procalcitonin >1.2 ng/mL, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) protein >80 mg/dL, CSF absolute neutrophil count >1000 cells per mm3, and C-reactive protein >40 mg/L. Using the derivation set, we developed the MSE, assigning 3 points for procalcitonin, 2 points for CSF protein, and 1 point for each of the other variables. An MSE ≥1 predicted bacterial meningitis with a sensitivity of 100% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 95.0%–100%), a specificity of 83.2 (95% CI: 80.6–85.5), and a negative predictive value of 100% (95% CI 99.4–100.)

CONCLUSIONS:

The MSE accurately distinguishes bacterial from aseptic meningitis in children with CSF pleocytosis.

Early Feeding in Acute Pancreatitis in Children: A Randomized Controlled Trial

BACKGROUND:

Studies have increasingly challenged the traditional management of acute pancreatitis (AP) with bowel rest. However, these studies used a low-fat diet or transgastric feeding and only included adults. Aiming to generate higher-quality prospective pediatric data, we compared the traditional approach of fasting and intravenous fluids and early enteral feeding with standard diet or formula.

METHODS:

Randomized controlled trial of children (2–18 years) with mild-moderate AP. Patients were randomly assigned 1:1 to initial fasting and intravenous fluids or an immediate, unrestricted diet. Pain scores, blood measures, and cross-sectional imaging were recorded throughout admission and follow-up. The primary outcome was time to discharge, and secondary outcomes were clinical and biochemical resolution and local and systemic complication rates.

RESULTS:

Of 33 patients (17 [52%] boys, mean age of 11.5 [±4.8] years), 18 (55%) were randomly assigned to early feeding and 15 (45%) were randomly assigned to initial fasting. We recorded the median (interquartile range [IQR]) time to discharge (2.6 [IQR 2.0 to 4.0] vs 2.9 [IQR 1.8 to 5.6]; P = .95), reduction in serum lipase levels by day 2 (58% [IQR 2% to 85%] vs 48% [IQR 3% to 71%]; P = .65), and readmission rates (1 of 18 [6%] vs 2 of 15 [13%]; P = .22) between the early feeding and fasting cohorts, respectively. Immediate or delayed complication rates did not differ. Patients randomly assigned to early feeding had weight gain of 1.3 kg (IQR 0.29 to 3.6) at follow-up, compared with weight loss of 0.8 kg (IQR –2.1 to 0.7) in fasted patients (P = .028).

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the first randomized controlled trial in pediatric AP. There was no difference between early commencement of a standard oral diet and initial fast in any of the major outcome measures.

Communication in Pediatric Oncology: A Qualitative Study

BACKGROUND:

When children are seriously ill, parents rely on communication with their clinicians. However, in previous research, researchers have not defined how this communication should function in pediatric oncology. We aimed to identify these communication functions from parental perspectives.

METHODS:

Semistructured interviews with 78 parents of children with cancer from 3 academic medical centers at 1 of 3 time points: treatment, survivorship, or bereavement. We analyzed interview transcripts using inductive and deductive coding.

RESULTS:

We identified 8 distinct functions of communication in pediatric oncology. Six of these functions are similar to previous findings from adult oncology: (1) building relationships, (2) exchanging information, (3) enabling family self-management, (4) making decisions, (5) managing uncertainty, and (6) responding to emotions. We also identified 2 functions not previously described in the adult literature: (7) providing validation and (8) supporting hope. Supporting hope manifested as emphasizing the positives, avoiding false hopes, demonstrating the intent to cure, and redirecting toward hope beyond survival. Validation manifested as reinforcing "good parenting" beliefs, empowering parents as partners and advocates, and validating concerns. Although all functions seemed to interact, building relationships appeared to provide a relational context in which all other interpersonal communication occurred.

CONCLUSIONS:

Parent interviews provided evidence for 8 distinct communication functions in pediatric oncology. Clinicians can use this framework to better understand and fulfill the communication needs of parents whose children have serious illness. Future work should be focused on measuring whether clinical teams are fulfilling these functions in various settings and developing interventions targeting these functions.

Duration of Resuscitation at Birth, Mortality, and Neurodevelopment: A Systematic Review

CONTEXT:

The International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation Neonatal Life Support Task Force reviewed evidence for the duration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for newborns immediately after birth.

OBJECTIVE:

To summarize evidence for ongoing CPR on the outcomes of survival, neurodevelopment, and the composite of survival without moderate or severe neurodevelopmental impairment (NDI).

DATA SOURCES:

Medline, Embase, Evidence-Based Medicine Reviews, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, and Scientific Electronic Library Online were searched between inception and February 29, 2020.

STUDY SELECTION:

Two independent reviewers selected studies of newborns with at least 10 minutes of asystole, bradycardia, or pulseless electrical activity for which CPR is indicated.

DATA EXTRACTION:

Two independent reviewers extracted data and appraised the risk of bias.

RESULTS:

In 16 eligible studies, researchers reported outcomes of 579 newborns born between 1982 and 2017. Within individual studies, 2% to 100% of infants survived to last follow-up (hospital discharge through 12 years). Summarized across studies, 237 of 579 (40.9%) newborns survived to last follow-up. In 13 studies, researchers reported neurodevelopmental outcomes of 277 newborns. Of these, 30 of 277 (10.8%) survived without moderate or severe impairment, and 240 of 277 (87%) met the composite outcome of death or NDI (191 died and 49 survived with moderate or severe impairment).

LIMITATIONS:

There was very low certainty of evidence because of risk of bias and inconsistency.

CONCLUSIONS:

Infants with ongoing CPR at 10 minutes after birth are at high risk for mortality and neurodisability, but survival without moderate or severe NDI is possible. One specified duration of CPR is unlikely to uniformly predict survival or survival without neuroimpairment.

Novel Coronavirus Infection in Febrile Infants Aged 60 Days and Younger

In this case series, we describe the clinical course and outcomes of 7 febrile infants aged ≤60 days with confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection. No infant had severe outcomes, including the need for mechanical ventilation or ICU level of care. Two infants had concurrent urinary tract infections, which were treated with antibiotics. Although a small sample, our data suggest that febrile infants with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection often have mild illness.

Infant With SARS-CoV-2 Infection Causing Severe Lung Disease Treated With Remdesivir

We describe an ex-premature infant presenting with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection in the fifth week of life. In current reports, researchers indicate that acute symptomatic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection is relatively rare and much less severe than in adults. This case highlights that infection can be associated with life-threatening pulmonary disease in young infants and that infection can follow a similar disease course to that described in adults. We provide first data on the use of the novel antiviral remdesivir in a young child and an innovative approach to expedited approval from a multidisciplinary clinical team and bioethics committee for compassionate access to the drug.

COVID-19 Inflammatory Syndrome With Clinical Features Resembling Kawasaki Disease

We describe 2 patients with coronavirus disease who had multiple clinical features suggestive of Kawasaki disease (KD). Both patients presented with fever lasting >5 days and were found to have rash, conjunctival injection, and swollen lips. One patient also had extremity swelling, whereas the other developed desquamation of the fingers. In both cases, laboratory results were similar to those seen in KD. These patients had highly unusual but similar features, and both appeared to respond favorably to treatment. It remains unclear whether these patients had true KD or manifestations of coronavirus disease that resembled KD.

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