In children with sickle cell anemia, some red blood cells are malformed, shaped like a crescent instead of a disc. This makes them more likely to clump together, causing organ damage, strokes, and pain.
An international study initiated by Washington University has found that giving monthly blood transfusions to children with sickle cell anemia can significantly reduce their risk of what are known as “silent” strokes.
Unlike regular strokes, which have sudden, overt symptoms like difficulty speaking or numbness in an arm or leg, silent strokes can only be detected with an MRI scan, so they generally go unnoticed by parents and physicians.
If there’s a gender war, the girls are winning, says psychologist Wes Crenshaw.
“Right now, to be a young white female is to be in a cohort of highly competitive applicants to just about any advanced program that there is,” Crenshaw said.
Women outnumber and outperform men in college. In middle and high school, girls also get better grades than boys. Crenshaw says these performance differences can be traced back to how children are raised, and the distractions they face.
Dr. Barbara Warner (left) and nurse Laura Linneman check on infant Skylar Angel in the neonatal intensive care unit at St. Louis Children's Hospital. Skylar and her twin, Bayley, were born prematurely.
Credit Elizabethe Holland Durando, Washington University School of Medicine
A team of researchers at Washington University has found that babies born prematurely have very different gut microbes than those of babies carried to term.
All children are born with almost no microbes in their intestines. Their gut microbial communities develop quickly in the weeks after birth ― although the communities don't reach full maturity until children are 2 or 3 years old.
But little is known about how this microbial development occurs.
A health industry report published Thursday suggests federal programs that tie hospital quality scores to Medicare reimbursements are giving St. Louis hospitals a reason to improve.
Seventeen St. Louis area hospitals received bonus payments this year from Medicare thanks to programs in the Affordable Care Act that reward hospitals for providing a high quality of care. At the same time, 25 were penalized for low scores, high readmission rates or failing to improve between 2011 and 2012.
With the clear, warm weather of summer, more St. Louisans of all ages are taking to the streets and the sidewalks on foot and by bike. The city has plans in the works to make walking, biking and running easier, from Complete Streets to separated bike lanes.
“I think overall we have great facilities in St. Louis and there has been a lot of improvement in the five years that I’ve lived here,” said Aaron Hipp, assistant professor of social work at Washington University in St. Louis. His research evaluates how built communities affect the activity and health of those who use them.
Part of the NSF grant will be used to study the effects of drought on plants, in particular corn. This image shows leaves of a single species of plant (not corn), grown under normal and drought conditions. An infrared scan can detect chemical changes in the drought-stressed leaf that are invisible to the human eye.
These billboards are part of an invasive honeysuckle education campaign, by the environmental fundraising organization Magnificent Missouri. Dan Burkhardt, who founded Magnificent Missouri, is a major donor to St. Louis Public Radio.