Archive for 2012

Surviving when the crying won’t stop!

It’s the end of the day and you’re looking forward to sitting down and relaxing, if only for just a minute, when it begins … the crying. She doesn’t want to feed. She doesn’t need to be changed, and none of your regular tricks for soothing her are working. She just keeps crying. You are at your wits’ end, but the screaming continues. You have entered: “The Period of PURPLE Crying.” Infant crying typically starts to … Read More

Honoring lives lost, celebrating lives saved

On a recent morning, I dealt with the death of one of my patients.  As sometimes happens with this job, instead of having time to process this, I was immediately faced with a busy clinic. After all of the patients were seen, and I had time to reflect, I realized that on the same day that cancer took the life of one of my patients, I had referred three other patients to our survivorship clinic. … Read More

Call to action: ‘Making America the best country in the world to be a child’

The horror of this past week is not easily understood. First holiday shoppers in our own community and then school children and teachers in Connecticut were victims of mass murder. The Newtown tragedy was particularly jarring to those of us who have dedicated our lives to caring for children and families. Through our daily work caring for seriously ill children at Doernbecher, we are accustomed to helping families through the pain and suffering that accompanies … Read More

John L. Scott’s longtime support of Doernbecher harkens back to the hospital’s first-ever radiothon

My father was a pediatrician and my mother is a nurse, so I grew up around hospitals and medical offices. That exposure has given me an appreciation for how difficult it can be to provide the care necessary for families and children, and Doernbecher has been a strong leader in the community, providing children’s health and supporting families that need assistance. It means a lot to me that the company I work for has an … Read More

Consent form improves emergency care for kids

It’s hard for parents to imagine their child needing emergency medical services when they’re not around — but there are many times when this happens, especially on weekdays when parents are at work and children are in school. That’s why at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital we have developed an emergency consent form to ensure children receive the care they need, as quickly as possible, in any pediatric emergency room. Although most public and private schools have similar … Read More

Treating pediatric heart disease as far away as Pago Pago

This Thanksgiving I added something new to the list of things I am grateful for. Three weeks ago, I traveled to a stunningly beautiful part of the United States, where I found hundreds of children living with debilitating heart disease. At some point in the past, the children had contracted either strep throat or impetigo, a common streptococcal skin infection. Weeks to years later, they were found to have heart murmurs. Many were fatigued and … Read More

Q: My 8-year-old has trouble going to sleep. Is it OK to give him over-the-counter sleep medication? What about melatonin?

There is a growing amount of research demonstrating that adequate quality and quantity of sleep is closely related to improved health and behavioral outcomes in children. Getting enough sleep makes children healthier and parents happier. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends behavioral treatment for insomnia in children. Behavioral methods are quite effective. According to a recent review of behavioral methods to treat insomnia (SLEEP, Vol. 29, No. 10, 2006), more than 80 percent of children … Read More

Balancing act

2 mice Nine years ago, when I started medical school, I told my husband (who was then my boyfriend) that I wanted to train for a marathon. Many of my colleagues in Northwestern’s M.D.-Ph.D. program ran marathons. The kind of people who embark on a really long, intense dual degree program like that tend to push themselves in other areas of life, and do intense, crazy things just to prove they can. My husband thought … Read More

Sunglasses in winter? Yes, protect your family all year long

As I was walking to the hospital this morning thinking about my next blog post, I realized that I had forgotten my sunglasses at home, and I needed them. Yes, it is November in Portland! So I thought I would write about sources of natural background radiation to which we are all exposed just by living here on Earth and how we can limit a child’s exposure to, or the long-term effects of, that exposure. Natural … Read More

Finnigan Mooney — Nike/Doernbecher Freestyle designer

Finnigan Mooney Age: 10 Diagnosis: Hypoplastic left heart syndrome Nike/Doernbecher Freestyle Shoe: Dunk Hi SB Q: So a cowboy rides into town on Friday and leaves on Friday but only stays three days. How is this possible? A: The horse’s name is Friday. That’s the kind of non-stop entertainment you can find from Finnigan Joseph Mooney, a natural comedian with an infectious smile. Finn has toughed out more than 13 heart surgeries during his life, … Read More

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