Evidence and Practice
Why you should read this article: • To improve your knowledge of the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) parents when accessing healthcare for their children • To familiarise yourself with the concept of heteronormativity • To understand how staff awareness and training can improve the healthcare experiences of LGBT parents There are increasing numbers of parents who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT), but there is little research on the experiences of LGBT parents when accessing healthcare for their children. The aims of this literature review were to identify existing articles on the topic, explore LGBT parents’ experiences and draw implications for practice. The review included ten studies published from 1995 onwards and conducted in Australia, Sweden, the US and Finland. Many LGBT parents had positive experiences while others had encountered overt homophobia. However, there remained an underlying sense of heteronormativity, with many healthcare professionals making heterosexist assumptions and healthcare forms being heterocentric. The documentation used in healthcare settings should be adapted and healthcare professionals should improve their awareness on this issue and have training on how to recognise and include LGBT families. The review did not identify any studies on this subject from the UK, which suggests that research on the healthcare experiences of families with LGBT parents in the UK is required.
Role of children’s nurses in addressing psychosocial needs of young people with thalassaemia
Why you should read this article: • To enhance your understanding of the experiences of young people with anorexia who receive hospital treatment • To recognise the importance of addressing the emotional needs of young people with anorexia in addition to their physical needs • To identify how you can improve your practice when caring for young people with anorexia Anorexia nervosa is characterised by significantly low body weight, a fear of weight gain and persistent efforts to prevent the restoration of normal weight. It has potentially life-threatening physical and psychological complications, and many young people with anorexia present to hospital in a seriously compromised physical condition. While their physical symptoms require urgent treatment, addressing their emotional and psychological needs is equally important if they are to progress towards recovery. However, the conflicting thoughts common in anorexia mean that young people often feel highly ambivalent about treatment, which makes the disorder particularly challenging to treat. This article details a literature review undertaken to explore the perceptions and experiences of young people who have received hospital treatment for anorexia, with the aim of offering children’s nurses insights into how they can optimally support these patients. The findings demonstrate the importance of listening to young people, treating them as individuals and understanding their experiences, in addition to addressing their physical health needs.
Why you should read this article: • To recognise the need to include the perspectives of children and adolescents with cancer in research and practice • To identify the value of seeking children’s and adolescents’ perspectives in developing child-centred interventions • To gain a greater understanding of the experiences of children and adolescents following a diagnosis of cancer Background All healthcare professionals working with children should have a child-centred perspective, and should be responsive to children and adolescents who want to talk about their thoughts and feelings. The child’s or adolescent’s story is the starting point for mutual understanding between them and the healthcare professional, and is the basis for shared decision-making between patients and healthcare professionals in child-centred care. Aim To advance understanding of how Swedish children and adolescents with cancer perceived the effects of the disease and its treatment on their everyday life. Method Ten girls and five boys, aged between five and 18 years, with cancer were interviewed individually using four communication tools. The interviews lasted between 20 and 65 minutes and took place without their parents present. The data were analysed using content analysis. Findings Transition to an unpredictable everyday life was identified as a main theme, with five subthemes: struggling with side effects of the cancer and its treatment; treatment as an ‘emotional rollercoaster’; changed self and being vulnerable; changed social life; and concerns about academic achievement. Conclusion To provide effective support and care for children and adolescents with cancer, healthcare professionals should strive to listen to them and focus on their perspectives.
Healthcare professionals should be confident and knowledgeable about the disorder
Introduction to the National Children’s Hospitals Bereavement Network’s support standards
Why you should read this article: • To enhance your knowledge of what the optimal management and monitoring of type 1 diabetes entails • To improve your practice in providing support to children with type 1 diabetes and their families • To count towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD, or you may wish to write a reflective account (UK readers) • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers) Type 1 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes among children and young people, and requires careful management to ensure that blood glucose levels stay as close as possible to the target range. Suboptimal management can lead to serious health consequences, including damage to various organs and body systems. Many children with type 1 diabetes are not diagnosed until they develop diabetic ketoacidosis, which is distressing and potentially life-threatening. This article provides an overview of the management of type 1 diabetes in children and young people, including the insulin replacement therapy and dietary management required. It also emphasises the importance of regular and ongoing monitoring of blood glucose levels, quarterly measurement of glycated haemoglobin, and the management of hyperglycaemia and hypoglycaemia.
Why you should read this article • To recognise that self-harm in young people is common and increasing in prevalence • To increase your awareness of child-centred best practice approaches to caring for young people who self-harm • To count towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD, or you may wish to write a reflective account (UK readers) • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers) Self-harm, where an individual purposefully harms themselves with a non-fatal outcome, is common, especially among young people. A wide range of mental health issues are associated with self-harm and it increases the likelihood that the person will eventually die by suicide. This article explores the motivations for self-harming behaviours, risk and protective factors, the components of risk assessment and potential interventions. Self-harm can be associated with stigma and discrimination in society and in healthcare services. This article aims to support healthcare practitioners in providing non-judgemental, empathetic and respectful care to these young people and their families and carers.
Why you should read this article: • To enhance your knowledge of the development of the gastrointestinal (GI) system • To understand the causes and management of various GI conditions that infants and children may present with • To count towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD, or you may wish to write a reflective account (UK readers) • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers) This article is the eighth in a series on the biological basis of child health. It describes the embryological development of the gastrointestinal (GI) system and some of the structural anomalies that may arise during that time and later affect GI functioning. The article also discusses the functions of the GI tract – including ingestion, digestion, absorption and defecation – and explains how these relate to GI conditions seen in infants and children. GI conditions are common in childhood and some of these will be medical emergencies, so it is important that children’s nurses have knowledge of the GI system and of the presentation and management of GI conditions in children.
Why you should read this article: • To identify the adverse effects of indoor and outdoor air pollution on children, particularly those with asthma • To increase your knowledge of how to support children, families and schools to limit their exposure to air pollution and reduce their own emissions of pollutants • To count towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD, or you may wish to write a reflective account (UK readers) • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers) This article is the second in a series on asthma. The first article identified that the UK is experiencing an ‘epidemic’ of childhood asthma and one of the major culprits is air pollution. This article examines the main causes of air pollution and how they affect the lung health of children from before birth and onwards. It considers the contribution of indoor and outdoor air pollution, how these have changed over time and the unequal effect they may have on vulnerable populations. The nurse’s role is discussed, not only in terms of clinical care, but also as adviser to families and schools on what actions to take to limit their exposure and reduce their own emissions of pollutants.
Understanding childhood growth and development is crucial for children’s nurses
Why you should read this article • To enhance your knowledge of global and UK trends in asthma and asthma care as it relates to children and young people • To recognise the importance of social determinants of health such as smoking, air pollution and inadequate housing in the development of asthma • To count towards revalidation as part of your 35 hours of CPD, or you may wish to write a reflective account (UK readers) • To contribute towards your professional development and local registration renewal requirements (non-UK readers) This is the first in a series of articles on asthma, the most prevalent long-term condition in children with a significant burden of disease. This first article presents an overview of the state of asthma and asthma care in the UK and globally, especially as it relates to children and young people. It considers prevalence, age and sex comparisons, causation, morbidity and mortality rates, cost and the quality of care. It also outlines what children and young people wish for their asthma care.
Why there is a move away from mechanical ventilation to non-invasive treatment in children
Is it true that ‘a little air won't cause harm’? Leah Rosengarten looks at the evidence
There are often inconsistencies about what the levels of oxygen for children should be
First identified in 2015, there is no vaccine for this virus
An insight into this rare genetic disorder in which both parents are recessive gene carriers
An insight into this genetic disorder occurring in 1 in 6,000 infant males
Waardenburg syndrome is a genetic disorder that gives people a distinctive appearance
Understanding Usher syndrome which is found in approximately 10,000 people in the UK
An insight into this genetic disorder which carries a poor prognosis and is often fatal