Aug. 30, 2023

Pediatric epilepsy monitoring services relocates
Children’s Minnesota epilepsy monitoring services moved to the Minneapolis campus from the St. Paul campus in August 2023. The epilepsy unit is equipped to monitor and record patients’ EEG readings continually so seizures are detected right away and the seizure origin in the brain can be located.

Children’s Minnesota and Minnesota Epilepsy Group are designated a Level 4 epilepsy center, offering the highest level of diagnosis and treatment options for children with epilepsy. As one of the largest pediatric epilepsy centers in the country, we treat more than 700 patients every year – 70% of kids in the Twin Cities and more than any other hospital in the Upper Midwest.

This multi-disciplinary team includes a full range of pediatric experts including pediatric epileptologists, pediatric neurosurgeons, pediatric neuropsychologists, and psychologists.

Epilepsy monitoring services will continue in the St. Paul neonatal intensive care unit.  Read more about the epilepsy program here.
Baby Aria: Surviving a rare combination of fetal cardiovascular and pulmonary diagnoses
Sarah and Jesse Stensby learned they were expecting a baby girl with Turner syndrome during a 10-week DNA blood test. Turner syndrome is the most common sex chromosome abnormality in females and the rate of miscarriage is 98%. Sarah was referred to the Midwest Fetal Care Center (MWFCC), a collaboration between Allina Health and Children’s Minnesota. 

The Stensbys’ unborn baby girl was incredibly in the 2% of Turner syndrome survivors, but the rest of her fetal journey would be no less extraordinary. During the next several months, baby Aria was diagnosed with several other complications including an abnormal lung mass, hydrops, coarctation of the aorta, and intrauterine growth restriction.  

A multidisciplinary team of specialists cared for Sarah and Aria, including their central care team at MWFCC: Dr. Lisa Howley, director of the fetal cardiology program, Dr. Joe Lillegard, pediatric general and thoracic surgeon, and Dr. Saul Snowise, maternal-fetal medicine specialist. “Seeing all of these diagnoses together – it’s exceptionally rare,” said Dr. Howley. “It’s the kind of situation you might see once in your career or once in a decade.”  

Read Aria’s full story here

Intensive Care Follow-up Clinic expands to include cardiovascular care
The Children’s Minnesota Intensive Care Follow-up Clinic, formerly called the NICU Follow-up Clinic, has changed its name and expanded service offerings to include more patients beyond neonatal intensive care, including those treated in the cardiovascular program. Beginning in August 2023, newborns who are hospitalized in any intensive care unit – including babies who were born premature, have medical complexities such as congenital heart disease, or are facing other health challenges – may be eligible to receive care in the Intensive Care Follow-up Clinic. 

During their follow-up care journey, our kid experts from across Children’s Minnesota work with the child’s pediatrician, other health care providers, and the child’s family to create an individualized plan of continuous care for any medical condition they have.

Read more about the Intensive Care Follow-up Clinic here.
Increase vaccine confidence in the pediatric office
Hesitancy or refusal of pediatric immunizations is a growing concern among physicians and public health officials as rates of vaccine preventable diseases in children are on the rise. The article, “Optimizing Your Pediatric Office for Vaccine Confidence,” outlines ways to increase pediatric vaccine rates by implementing interventions, systems and access to vaccines in the clinic. The article was written and published in Pediatric Clinics of North America by Dr. Gigi Chawla, MD, MHA, chief of general pediatrics at Children’s Minnesota, Patricia Stinchfield, RN, MS, CPNP-PC, and Joseph Kurland, MPH, CIC. 

Most pediatricians are eager to get every child vaccinated completely on the recommended immunization schedule – and make sure parents are well-informed and confident they’ve made the best decision for their child’s health by choosing to vaccinate their child. Top recommendations from the report including promoting trust and open communication between all clinic staff and families, implementing a vaccination infrastructure with a leader to monitor vaccine policy changes, and treating every clinic visit as a vaccine visit. Read the full article here. 
Register now: Twin Cities Pediatric Update, Sept. 21-22, 2023 
There is still time to register for the 5th annual Twin Cities Pediatric Update (TCPU) conference! This year’s event will feature a variety of plenary sessions on the latest news and advances in pediatrics and three keynote speakers, including: 
  •  After working as a pediatrician at children's hospitals for 15 years, Dr. Annie Andrews decided to run for Congress to give children a voice in Washington, D.C. She was the Democratic nominee in South Carolina’s first congressional district in 2022. Annie is currently a clinical professor of pediatrics at George Washington University where she cares for children and adolescents at Children’s National Hospital.

  • Emma Benoit was left paralyzed after she attempted suicide at age 16. Her painful experience led her to help others with her story and shine a light on the youth suicide epidemic. 

  • Dr. Veronica Gomez-Lobo, MD, is a pediatric and adolescent obstetrician gynecologist currently serving as senior clinician and director of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology Program within the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. She has published and lectured extensively regarding issues in the field of pediatric gynecology, including fertility preservation, differences in sex development, congenital anomalies, and transgender care. 

  • Dr. Rachel R. Hardeman, PhD, MPH, is a tenured associate professor in the Division of Health Policy & Management at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health. She uses the frameworks of critical race theory and reproductive justice to explore the impact of racism on health, particularly for Black mothers and babies. Dr. Hardeman is also the founding director of the Center for Antiracism Research for Health Equity. 
Participants may join the conference in-person at the Wilf Family Center at M Health Fairview Masonic Children's Hospital, or virtually. Register here
Kids and sleep: Primary care providers can help
Reports about kids’ lack of sleep don’t typically surprise pediatric health care providers. After all, more than one third of kids ages 4 months to 17 years in the U.S. sleep less than what is recommended. But poor sleep can frustrate an entire family, so when a child is suspected of having a common or complex sleep disorder, it’s important to get to the root cause of the problem quickly.

Kids who do not get enough sleep are at increased risk for injuries, poor mental health, obesity, type 2 diabetes, attention and behavior problems, and poor cognitive development. In the Talking Pediatrics podcast episode, “What’s Sleep Got to Do With It?,” host Dr. Angela Kade Goepferd talked with Dr. Ben Ryba-White, pediatric sleep medicine clinician at Children’s Minnesota Sleep Clinic, about the importance of sleep for kids and what primary care physicians can do to help. Read more here.

Virtual Grand Rounds
Every Thursday, 8 - 9 a.m.

Join us for the live, virtual event or watch recorded presentations.
Upcoming presentations

View past presentations

Register for the upcoming Grand Rounds session on Sept. 14:
"Updates in pediatric obesity” 

Talking Pediatrics podcast
Join us as we bring intriguing stories and relevant pediatric health care information and partner with you in the care of your patients. Our guests, data, ideas and practical tips will surprise, challenge and perhaps change how you care for kids.

Listen to the previously recorded Talking Pediatrics:
"Getting to the heart of the matter: Health equity access"
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