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Children, Volume 4, Issue 2 (February 2017)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Pediatric Mortality in a Rural Tertiary Care Center in Liberia
Children 2017, 4(2), 8; doi:10.3390/children4020008
Received: 27 October 2016 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
Liberia is a low‐income country in West Africa that has faced significant challenges, including a civil war and the recent Ebola epidemic. Little data exists on the more current post‐war and pre‐Ebola trends of child health in Liberia in the rural setting. This
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Liberia is a low‐income country in West Africa that has faced significant challenges, including a civil war and the recent Ebola epidemic. Little data exists on the more current post‐war and pre‐Ebola trends of child health in Liberia in the rural setting. This study is a retrospective chart review of pediatric mortality in 2013 at a rural tertiary care center in Liberia, 10 years post‐war. From January 2013 to December 2013, there were 50 pediatric deaths, or 5.4% of the 920 total pediatric admissions. The most common cause of neonatal death was sepsis, and the most common cause of death under five years of age was malaria. The majority (82.0%) of the deaths were in children under five. Pediatric mortality at this hospital was similar to other reported mortality six years post‐war, and lower than that reported immediately post‐war. Neonatal sepsis and malaria are two significant causes of pediatric mortality in this community and, therefore, further efforts to decrease childhood mortality should focus on these causes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Parent and Child Report of Pain and Fatigue in JIA: Does Disagreement between Parent and Child Predict Functional Outcomes?
Children 2017, 4(2), 11; doi:10.3390/children4020011
Received: 15 September 2016 / Accepted: 23 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
While previous research in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) has identified discrepancy between parent and child perception of disease-related symptoms such as pain, the significance and impact of this disagreement has not been characterized. We examined the extent to which parent-child discordance in JIA
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While previous research in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) has identified discrepancy between parent and child perception of disease-related symptoms such as pain, the significance and impact of this disagreement has not been characterized. We examined the extent to which parent-child discordance in JIA symptom ratings are associated with child functional outcomes. Linear regression and mixed effects models were used to test the effects of discrepancy in pain and fatigue ratings on functional outcomes in 65 dyads, consisting of youth with JIA and one parent. Results suggested that children reported increased activity limitations and negative mood when parent and child pain ratings were discrepant, with parent rated child pain much lower. Greater discrepancy in fatigue ratings was also associated with more negative mood, whereas children whose parent rated child fatigue as moderately lower than the child experienced decreased activity limitations relative to dyads who agreed closely on fatigue level. Implications of these results for the quality of life and treatment of children with JIA are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chronic and Recurrent Pain)
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Open AccessArticle Do Mothers Benefit from a Child-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Treatment (CBT) for Childhood Functional Abdominal Pain? A Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial
Children 2017, 4(2), 13; doi:10.3390/children4020013
Received: 13 December 2016 / Revised: 3 February 2017 / Accepted: 6 February 2017 / Published: 15 February 2017
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Abstract
While the efficacy of cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) approaches for childhood functional abdominal pain (FAP) is well-established for child outcomes, only a few studies have reported on parent-specific outcomes. This randomized controlled pilot trial analyzed effects of a group CBT on maternal variables (i.e.,
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While the efficacy of cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) approaches for childhood functional abdominal pain (FAP) is well-established for child outcomes, only a few studies have reported on parent-specific outcomes. This randomized controlled pilot trial analyzed effects of a group CBT on maternal variables (i.e., pain-related behavior, worries and self-efficacy, as well as general psychosocial strain). Methods: The sample constituted of 15 mothers in the intervention group (IG) and 14 mothers in the waitlist control group (WLC). Outcome measures were assessed pre-treatment, post-treatment and at three months follow-up. Results: Analyses revealed significant, large changes in maladaptive maternal reactions related to the child’s abdominal pain in the IG compared to the WLC—i.e., reduced attention (d = 0.95), medical help-seeking (d = 0.92), worries (d = 1.03), as well as a significant increase in behaviors that encourage the child’s self-management (d = 1.03). In addition, maternal self-efficacy in dealing with a child’s pain significantly increased in the IG as well (d = 0.92). Treatment effects emerged post-treatment and could be maintained until three months follow-up. There were no effects on general self-efficacy and maternal quality of life. Conclusion: While these results are promising, and underline the efficacy of the CBT approach for both the child and mothers, further studies, including long-term follow-ups, are warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mind-Body Medicine in Children and Adolescents)
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Open AccessArticle Neighborhood Safety and Major Depressive Disorder in a National Sample of Black Youth; Gender by Ethnic Differences
Children 2017, 4(2), 14; doi:10.3390/children4020014
Received: 1 February 2017 / Revised: 13 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 February 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
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Abstract
Adolescence is a developmental period marked by increased stress, especially among Black youth. In addition to stress related to their developmental transition, social factors such as a perceived unsafe neighborhood impose additional risks. We examined gender and ethnic differences in the association between
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Adolescence is a developmental period marked by increased stress, especially among Black youth. In addition to stress related to their developmental transition, social factors such as a perceived unsafe neighborhood impose additional risks. We examined gender and ethnic differences in the association between perceived neighborhood safety and major depressive disorder (MDD) among a national sample of Black youth. We used data from the National Survey of American Life - Adolescents (NSAL-A), 2003–2004. In total, 1170 Black adolescents entered the study. This number was composed of 810 African American and 360 Caribbean Black youth (age 13 to 17). Demographic factors, perceived neighborhood safety, and MDD (Composite International Diagnostic Interview, CIDI) were measured. Logistic regressions were used to test the association between neighborhood safety and MDD in the pooled sample, as well as based on ethnicity by gender groups. In the pooled sample of Black youth, those who perceived their neighborhoods to be unsafe were at higher risk of MDD (Odds Ratio [OR] = 1.25; 95% Confidence Interval [CI] = 1.02-1.51). The perception that one’s neighborhood is unsafe was associated with a higher risk of MDD among African American males (OR=1.41; 95% CI = 1.03–1.93) but not African American females or Caribbean Black males and females. In conclusion, perceived neighborhood safety is not a universal psychological determinant of MDD across ethnic by gender groups of Black youth; however, policies and programs that enhance the sense of neighborhood safety may prevent MDD in male African American youth. Full article

Review

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Open AccessReview Evidence-Based Psychological Interventions for the Management of Pediatric Chronic Pain: New Directions in Research and Clinical Practice
Children 2017, 4(2), 9; doi:10.3390/children4020009
Received: 22 October 2016 / Revised: 22 October 2016 / Accepted: 13 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
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Abstract
Over the past 20 years our knowledge about evidence-based psychological interventions for pediatric chronic pain has dramatically increased. Overall, the evidence in support of psychological interventions for pediatric chronic pain is strong, demonstrating positive psychological and behavioral effects for a variety of children
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Over the past 20 years our knowledge about evidence-based psychological interventions for pediatric chronic pain has dramatically increased. Overall, the evidence in support of psychological interventions for pediatric chronic pain is strong, demonstrating positive psychological and behavioral effects for a variety of children with a range of pain conditions. However, wide scale access to effective psychologically-based pain management treatments remains a challenge for many children who suffer with pain. Increasing access to care and reducing persistent biomedical biases that inhibit attainment of psychological services are a central focus of current pain treatment interventions. Additionally, as the number of evidence-based treatments increase, tailoring treatments to a child or family’s particular needs is increasingly possible. This article will (1) discuss the theoretical frameworks as well as the specific psychological skills and strategies that currently hold promise as effective agents of change; (2) review and summarize trends in the development of well-researched outpatient interventions over the past ten years; and (3) discuss future directions for intervention research on pediatric chronic pain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chronic and Recurrent Pain)
Open AccessReview Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Pediatric Chronic Pain: Theory and Application
Children 2017, 4(2), 10; doi:10.3390/children4020010
Received: 4 October 2016 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 30 January 2017
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Abstract
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a third wave behavior therapy approach which aims to increase engagement in activities that bring meaning, vitality, and value to the lives of individuals experiencing persistent pain, discomfort, or distress. This goal is particularly relevant when these
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Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a third wave behavior therapy approach which aims to increase engagement in activities that bring meaning, vitality, and value to the lives of individuals experiencing persistent pain, discomfort, or distress. This goal is particularly relevant when these aversive experiences cannot be effectively avoided or when avoidance efforts risk their exacerbation, all of which may be common experiences in children and adolescents with chronic pain conditions. The primary aim of the present paper is to review and summarize the extant literature on the application, utility, and evidence for using ACT with pediatric chronic pain populations by: (1) defining the theoretical assumptions of the ACT model; (2) summarizing research study findings and relevant measures from the published literature; and (3) critically discussing the strengths, limitations and areas in need of further development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chronic and Recurrent Pain)
Open AccessReview Medical Yoga Therapy
Children 2017, 4(2), 12; doi:10.3390/children4020012
Received: 27 December 2016 / Accepted: 3 February 2017 / Published: 10 February 2017
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Abstract
Medical yoga is defined as the use of yoga practices for the prevention and treatment of medical conditions. Beyond the physical elements of yoga, which are important and effective for strengthening the body, medical yoga also incorporates appropriate breathing techniques, mindfulness, and meditation
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Medical yoga is defined as the use of yoga practices for the prevention and treatment of medical conditions. Beyond the physical elements of yoga, which are important and effective for strengthening the body, medical yoga also incorporates appropriate breathing techniques, mindfulness, and meditation in order to achieve the maximum benefits. Multiple studies have shown that yoga can positively impact the body in many ways, including helping to regulate blood glucose levels, improve musculoskeletal ailments and keeping the cardiovascular system in tune. It also has been shown to have important psychological benefits, as the practice of yoga can help to increase mental energy and positive feelings, and decrease negative feelings of aggressiveness, depression and anxiety. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mind-Body Medicine in Children and Adolescents)

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