Stories about: Expert’s Corner

How to help an adolescent who is using cannabis

A greenhouse where cannabis plants are grown legally.
A greenhouse where cannabis plants are grown legally.

Over recent years, big shifts in the marijuana landscape have made it easier than ever for American teens to be exposed to cannabis and to have the opportunity to use it.

Currently, only six states consider all forms of cannabis use to be illegal. Meanwhile, most states legally allow at least some medical cannabis use and several (including Massachusetts) have already legalized both medical and recreational use for adults.

“Whatever your views are on medical or recreational cannabis use for adults, however, there’s near-universal agreement that adolescents should not use cannabis,” says Lydia Shrier, MD, MPH, who directs clinic-based research in the Boston Children’s Hospital Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine.

But the legal system’s increasing support of cannabis and a rise in public approval of the drug has lowered the perception of risks associated with its use. As a result, in states where medical or recreational use for adults is legal, adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 are more likely to use cannabis than in states where all uses of the drug are illegal. …Read More

Expert’s corner: Caring for labral tears in young athletes

Hip labral tears lead image Young-Jo Kim

Labral tears are one of the most common hip injuries in young athletes and can be a result of acute injury to the hip, an underlying anatomical issue that damages the labrum or in some cases, both. Treatment of labral tears ranges from rest and physical therapy to arthroscopy to open surgery. So how do you know what course of treatment is right for each patient?

Young-Jo Kim, MD, PhD, a pediatric and young adult orthopedic hip specialist at Boston Children’s Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Center, discusses the causes of labral tears and his philosophy for treatment of this injury in young athletes.

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Tuberous sclerosis: Clinical clues for early diagnosis

A scan of the brain of a tuberous sclerosis patient.

Tuberous sclerosis is a rare neurological condition characterized by benign tumor growth in various parts of the body. It often affects the brain, eventually causing epilepsy and neurodevelopmental disorders. One challenge has been diagnosing the condition in infants, as they often don’t present with many clinical signs. However, a recent study published in Pediatrics has shed some light on early manifestations of this condition that may help lead to earlier diagnosis — and possibly earlier and more aggressive treatment.

To better understand clinical clues that may be seen in pediatric practice, Notes sat down with principal investigator of the study, Mustafa Sahin, MD, PhD, director of the Translational Neuroscience Center at Boston Children’s Hospital. He and his team in the Tuberous Sclerosis Program at Boston Children’s follow about 300 children with the condition. …Read More

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Preventing ACL injuries in female athletes through neuromuscular training

acl injury prevention notes lead image

Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries are on the rise, with about 350,000 patients undergoing ACL reconstruction surgery in the U.S. each year — and young athletes being the fastest growing patient population. Despite advances in ACL reconstruction, the risks of re-tear and future osteoarthritis are still major areas of concern. With this in mind, many institutions have increased clinical and research efforts for ACL injury prevention — a significant area of focus for The Micheli Center for Sports Injury Prevention at Boston Children’s Hospital. …Read More