Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Early childhood vaccine reduces leukemia risk

Dr Jopling found this great article put out by the AAP-- SAN FRANCISCO, May 21 (UPI) -- The Haemophilus influenzae Type b, or Hib, vaccine helps prevent the most common type of childhood cancer, in addition to its primary mission of preventing ear infections and meningitis that are caused by the Hib bacterium, according to a new study. Researchers now believe the vaccine prevents acute lymphoblastic leukemia because Hib infections can increase immune system reactions that turn relatively common "pre-leukemia" blood cells into cancer cells. This is prevented because the infections don't happen once all four doses of the vaccine have been administered to children.
"These experiments help explain why the incidence of leukemia has been dramatically reduced since the advent of regular vaccinations during infancy," said Markus Müschen, MD, PhD, a professor of laboratory medicine at University of California-San Francisco, in a press release. "Hib and other childhood infections can cause recurrent and vehement immune responses, which we have found could lead to leukemia, but infants that have received vaccines are largely protected and acquire long-term immunity through very mild immune reactions." With this knowledge in hand, researchers now are looking at other other vaccines to see if the infections they prevent are connected to the way other cancers begin forming in the body. "The study provides mechanistic support for the hypothesis that infection or inflammation promotes the evolution of childhood leukemia and that the timing of common infections in early life is critical," said Mel F. Greaves, MD, PhD, professor of cell biology at the Institute of Cancer Research in London.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Memorial day weekend

The doctors and staff of Willow Creek Pediatrics would like to wish our patients and their families a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend!

As with every holiday, there will be a doctor available on Memorial Day to see patients with urgent medical problems. We will book patients in consecutive order and stay until our latest scheduled patient is seen. If you need an appointment or need medical advice, please feel free to contact the office on Monday after 9:00 am. We also will have a doctor here Saturday and Sunday. Phones turn on at 8:00 am on Saturday and 8:30 am on Sunday.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

New Parking Stalls!

YEAH!!! We have three new stalls for parents of small children or expectant mom's at our office. We know how hard parking can be and we hope these will help. . They are located right up front just west of the doors. There is also a 15 min drop off spot if you are coming in to pick up a prescription or other items. Thanks for being such great patients! We love having your children at our office! 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Asthma Triggers: That time of the year again!


Certain things cause asthma “attacks” or make asthma worse. These are called triggers. Some common asthma triggers are

  • Things your child might be allergic to. These are called allergens. (Most children with asthma have allergies, and allergies are a major cause of asthma symptoms.)
    • House dust mites
    • Animal dander
    • Cockroaches
    • Mold
    • Pollens
  • Infections of the airways
    • Viral infections of the nose and throat
    • Other infections, such as pneumonia or sinus infections
  • Irritants in the environment (outside or indoor air you breathe)
    • Cigarette and other smoke
    • Air pollution
    • Cold air, dry air
    • Odors, fragrances, volatile organic compounds in sprays, and cleaning products
  • Exercise (About 80% of people with asthma develop wheezing, coughing, and a tight feeling in the chest when they exercise.)
  • Stress

Be sure to check all of your child’s “environments,” such as school, child care, and relatives’ homes, for exposure to these same things.

Help Your Child Avoid Triggers

While it is impossible to make the place you live in completely allergenor irritant-free, there are things you can do to reduce your child’s exposure to triggers. The following tips may help.

  • Do not smoke or let anyone else smoke in your home or car.
  • Reduce exposure to dust mites. The most necessary and effective things to do are to cover your child’s mattress and pillows with special allergy-proof encasings, wash their bedding in hot water every 1 to 2 weeks, remove stuffed toys from the bedroom, and vacuum and dust regularly. Other avoidance measures, which are more difficult or expensive, include reducing the humidity in the house with a dehumidifier or removing carpeting in the bedroom. Bedrooms in basements should not be carpeted.
  • If allergic to furry pets, the only truly effective means of reducing exposure to pet allergens is to remove them from the home. If this is not possible, keep them out of your child’s bedroom and consider putting a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter in their bedroom, removing carpeting, covering mattress and pillows with mite-proof encasings, and washing the animals regularly.
  • Reduce cockroach infestation by regularly exterminating, setting roach traps, repairing holes in walls or other entry points, and avoiding leaving exposed food or garbage.
  • Mold in homes is often due to excessive moisture indoors, which can result from water damage due to flooding, leaky roofs, leaking pipes, or excessive humidity. Repair any sources of water leakage. Control indoor humidity by using exhaust fans in the bathrooms and kitchen, and adding a dehumidifier in areas with naturally high humidity. Clean existing mold contamination with detergent and water. Sometimes porous materials such as wallboards with mold contamination have to be replaced.
  • Pollen exposure can be reduced by using an air conditioner in your child’s bedroom, with the vent closed, and leaving doors and windows closed during high pollen times. (Times vary with allergens, ask your allergist.)
  • Reduce indoor irritants by using unscented cleaning products and avoiding mothballs, room deodorizers, or scented candles.
  • Check air quality reports in weather forecasts or on the Internet. When the air quality is poor, keep your child indoors and be sure he takes his asthma control medications.
  • Decreasing your child’s exposure to triggers will help decrease symptoms as well as the need for asthma medications.

--Info from healthychildren.org and AAP