Author Archives: vickibalint

Lack of sleep may be associated with obesity

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A new tool to help with controlling asthma

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Down syndrome conference connects families, offers new information

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Young adult volunteers needed for new study on Down syndrome

Participants for clinical trials are currently being recruited at Barrow Neurological Institute. Researchers are looking to evaluate a medication that could improve intellectual function in young adults with Down Syndrome.

Physicians at Barrow, located at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, are looking for male or female participants between 18 and 30 years of age.

“To my knowledge, this is the first trial of its kind,” says Benjamin Seltzer, MD, Director of the Center of Alzheimer’s Disease and Cognitive Disorders at Barrow.

Seltzer says that Down syndrome is the most important cause of development delay. Many of the medical problems associated with Down syndrome, such as low thyroid and heart defects, can now be corrected.

Now, however, Seltzer says researchers have developed a medication that may provide a cognitive benefit. “A study like this has been needed for a long time.”

Down syndrome is a set of mental and physical symptoms that result from having an extra copy of Chromosome 21. There are more than 400,000 people living with Down syndrome in the United States. One in every 691 babies is born with Down syndrome.

The clinical trial at Barrow will last about 15 weeks. Participants will be required to take the newly developed medication twice daily. They will undergo periodic blood and memory testing and brain wave examinations.

The study is also being conducted at several other research centers in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Participants must be in good general health, between the ages of 18 and 30, and have a reliable person who can accompany them to all appointments.

For more information on how to enroll in this study, please call: Catherine Young at 602-406-3719.

More resources on Down syndrome:

National Institutes of Health 

DS Network AZ

Sharing Down syndrome Arizona

Top eight myths about childhood vaccines

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PANDAS support meeting this Saturday

Parents describe it as a sudden, out-of-the-blue onset of symptoms that are perplexing, alarming — and often misunderstood.

Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections, or PANDAS, is the term used to describe a life-changing condition that affects some children following illness with strep throat, or other viral or bacterial infection.

Tics, obsessive compulsive behaviors, and the onset of anxiety seem to appear overnight in children who were not otherwise affected. Continue reading

Arizona hospitals ramp up quality pediatric emergency care

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Hand sanitizers: read the label

Today’s Health Matters guest writer Mylan Blomquist, a senior at Barry Goldwater high school, decided to get to the bottom of how hand sanitizers work, and which ones are most effective.    

As a high school student with a lot of obligations, I’m somewhat of a hand sanitizer connoisseur.

I’ve always carried a portable sized gel hand sanitizer around with me, hoping that it is effective in fending off illnesses that would force me to miss school. It seems like everyone else has one in their school bag, too, with a variety of scents and fun holders.

Recently, I received an assignment from my senior IB biology class –to design and carry out lab research on a topic of my choosing. I was about to stress over this, thinking about how hard it would be to come up with my own unique topic.

But I soon realized the answer has been hiding in all my purses, backpacks, and pockets for years! Continue reading

Autism research: right here in Arizona

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Six seeds to boost vitamins and fiber

This week is National Public Health Week.

Since 1995, the American Public Health Association has encouraged communities across the country to observe National Public Health Week (NPHW) each April.

The big push this year is to highlight prevention and wellness.

One major theme of the campaign is to encourage healthy eating and regular exercise for families. Making small, everyday changes can go a long way toward decreasing the risk of preventable death from causes such as heart disease, cancer and stroke, says the APHA.

Adding seeds to the diet in moderation is one way to boost vitamins and fiber, says nutrition expert Michelle Gorman, RD, of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona.

Gorman, who has served as a nutrition supervisor for the Chandler School District, encourages families to give these six seeds a try in recipes and for snacking: Continue reading