They say that humor can be great medicine and this rings true for 18-year-old Abigale Hamlin, a leukemia patient being treated in Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Program. Abigale says that a good dose of laughter in her situation helps her to see and think of things in a different light.
Last year, when she first heard Chris Brown’s song featuring Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes, “Look At Me Now,” her witty and creative nature took hold and her inner rapper emerged as she flowed to the beats with her own lyrics that described what she was going through, “Look at me now, look at me now, I’m losin’ hair-air, or I’m gettin’ che-mo.”
“I’m the kind of person who sings a song and puts my own words to it because I think it is funny,” says Abigale. “Then I thought, how funny would it be if I took the lyrics and made this song cool and funny in my own way!” Read full post »
A video of a 68-year old New York bus monitor being bullied by middle schoolerssurfaced yesterday – bringing the unsettling topic of bullying top of mind.
Bullying can be one of the toughest situations a child or adult can face – and can arise in many forms from verbal to physical to emotional. It can manifest in a variety of ways including via the Internet (i.e. cyberbullying) and by spreading rumors. The aftermath of bullying can last a lifetime, providing a sense of hurt, isolation and fear.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, as many as half of all children are bullied at some time during their school years, and at least 10% are bullied regularly. Read full post »
Study: Doctors’ Language Tests Spotlight Need to Provide Interpreters in Medical Settings
The U.S. population is becoming increasingly diverse. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey Reports, in 2006, 13.7% of U.S. children under age 5 lived in a home where a parent or guardian spoke English less than “very well”. In medical settings, where effective communication between provider and patient is essential to quality care, language barriers have a negative impact. Research has shown that language barriers affect patient satisfaction and compliance, cost, medical errors, and risk of litigation.
While many doctors in the U.S. have some ability to communicate in a foreign language, there are no standards that determine what degree of proficiency is required to communicate effectively with patients. Often, doctors are left to determine themselves whether they’re up to the task of discussing complex medical information in a foreign language. They may not be the best judges of their own abilities. Read full post »
Children can be especially at risk to experience fear and anxiety as reactions to these events. Research shows that children who witness violence in regular news coverage, as well as in their families, schools and communities, are vulnerable to serious long-term emotional harm.
In the video below, Dr. Bob Hilt, child and adolescent psychiatrist at Seattle Children’s Hospital, discusses ways parents can help their children cope during disasters such as earthquakes, man-made disasters, and random acts of violence.
On the face of it, lean manufacturing, which is used by Toyota and other major global companies, doesn’t seem to fit very well into the world of medicine.
But, on closer examination, surgeons are beginning to see that lean has a good deal in common with the scientific method used in research – it’s just a matter of terminology, although it’s important to point out that this isn’t like randomized controlled trials; instead, it’s about testing hypotheses.
Indeed, the overall goal of lean is to define and refine a process, and then make the end product better for the customer; in medicine, that’s the patient. Read full post »
While tremendous advancements have been made over the past several decades in treating cystic fibrosis (CF), many CF therapies are not one-size-fits-all. What works for adult patients doesn’t necessarily help very young patients. And yet, it’s critical to begin therapies early in life to delay lung disease caused by CF from progressing.
Inhaled hypertonic (extra salty) saline is one such therapy recommended for many CF patients age 6 or older, but its effectiveness has never been evaluated in patients age 5 or younger. Despite this, since 2007 inhaled hypertonic saline has been increasingly used among U.S. children with CF ages 2 to 5.
Several years ago, Australian researchers stumbled on the benefits of hypertonic saline when they noticed that surfers with CF had fewer respiratory flare-ups than people with CF who didn’t surf. The researchers speculated that the salty mist of ocean water lessened respiratory CF symptoms and their subsequent study confirmed their hypothesis. Read full post »
Sometimes even a simple idea can make a difference in people’s lives. In my case, I hope that the creative adaptation of a simple science concept will one day save the lives of premature infants in the developing world.
As a program manager in the Center for Developmental Therapeutics, I support researchers working in the realm of preterm birth and neonatal health. So far, the main focus of that work has been on treatment options for premature infants, including the development of the Seattle Children’s Positive Airway Pressure ( Sea-PAP) device, an easy to use respiratory support device for preemies.
The aim of my research project is to investigate new ways of easily and inexpensively diagnosing lung immaturity in premature infants. Premature birth is a leading cause of neonatal death in the U.S., but not many people realize that it is also a huge issue in developing countries. New research has shown that 15 million premature babies are born each year, and helping preterm infants everywhere lead long, healthy lives is an important goal of my research. Read full post »
It didn’t take Kelly Clarkson very long to find out about Seattle Children’s Hospital patient Chris Rumble’s uplifting music video of her song “Stronger.” Chris posted the video on Sunday and by Tuesday Kelly tweeted, “Oh my goodness y’all have to see this! It’s beautiful! I can’t wait to visit these kids and nurses! It’s Seattle Children’s Hospital, I believe. God Bless y’all!”
Kelly was so moved that today she sent a video response to Chris and all the patients, families, and staff in Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Hematology Oncology unit. Everyone was so excited to hear from her, including many of the video’s star performers.
Check out Kelly’s video and the excitement it created with our patients, families and staff:
Seattle Children's complies with applicable federal and other civil rights laws and does not discriminate, exclude people or treat them differently based on race, color, religion (creed), sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin (ancestry), age, disability, or any other status protected by applicable federal, state or local law. Financial assistance for medically necessary services is based on family income and hospital resources and is provided to children under age 21 whose primary residence is in Washington, Alaska, Montana or Idaho.