January 2014

The Hidden Danger of Supplemental Car Seat Products

Although some parents use car seat aftermarket products such as head cushions or car seat covers, these items are not evaluated under the same federal safety standard as a child restraint system and can even void the car seat's warranty.

Empirical Evidence Supports Cognitive Rest After Concussion

Published this week, a study in Pediatrics provides evidence for cognitive rest as an effective strategy following a concussion. Naomi Brown, MD, a Sports Medicine specialist at CHOP, found that study participants with the highest levels of activity suffered longer duration of symptoms than those with lower levels of cognitive activity. Kristy Arbogast, PhD speaks with Dr. Brown about the research questions that would help clinicians, as well as a new assessment tool called the Cognitive Activity Scale.

Gimme an “E” for Digital Health Research

Last month I had the pleasure of attending the 5th annual mHealth Summit outside of Washington DC and presenting at its Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences Roundtable. Over 5,000 people attended, representing a broad array of stakeholders in mHealth (aka “mobile health”) including the federal government, academia, the health care industry, software development, and small business. Across all the great discourse I heard a common theme: that innovations in mHealth, such as health apps for smartphones and web-based health interventions, will only survive in the long-term if they are actually effective at improving health! This got me thinking about how we’re focusing on the letter “E” in our Digital Health research at CIRP@CHOP: through evidence, evaluation, ecosystem, and engagement.

Our 100th Blog Post!

I'm proud to note that today's post marks our 100th blog post! We are excited for improvements to our blog this year, but also wanted to take a look back at our most popular blog posts from the last year. They are:

Creating a Positive School Climate: CHOP’s Bullying Prevention Program

Since September, a CHOP team composed of researchers and educational facilitators have been working with fourth grade students and their teachers at Philadelphia's Childs Elementary School through the classroom-based Preventing Relational Aggression in Schools Everyday (PRAISE) Program. PRAISE is one component of CHOP’s Partner for Prevention (P4P) program, a school-based bullying prevention program designed to help at-risk 3rd-5th grade students learn to recognize and control their anger while promoting friendship-making skills.

ADHD: A Controversial Diagnosis

Recent New York Times stories on the diagnosis and treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) suggest that pharmaceutical companies, doctors, and even parents have added to what is the perceived overdiagnosis of this developmental disability and that the benefits of medication as a primary treatment have been overblown. While we need to be cautious about overdiagnosis and prescribing medication when unnecessary, we also need to take ADHD symptoms seriously, especially when it comes to injury prevention and driving.

A Researcher’s Keys to Administrative Data

The CIRP@CHOP Teen Driver Safety Research team uses several methodological approaches in our research, including: evidence-based intervention design and evaluation, driving simulation, on road driving assessment, and analysis of existing data sources. As the CIRP@CHOP Director of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, I have been working to find ways to improve the methods with which researchers analyze existing data sources to boost teen driver safety.

Leaving College with a Career Plan

Read a guest blog post from Lindsay Zajac, a senior at Bucknell University, who shares her insights about her participation in the CHOP Research Institute Summer Scholars Program (CRISSP) and working with the CIRP@ CHOP team.