In this issue:
- Pectus Clinic Helps Correct Chest Wall Abnormalities
- Nerve Blocks Reduce Use of Opioids for Postoperative Pain Management
- Vertebral Tethering Offers Option for Treating Scoliosis
- Coleen Sabatini, MD, MPH, keynote speaker at UCSF Pediatric Musculoskeletal Conference, June 25
Pectus Clinic Helps Correct Chest Wall Abnormalities
The Pectus Clinic at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals offers several treatments for patients with chest wall abnormalities. These include the following:
- Surgery and cryoanalgesia
- Suction device
- Orthotic braces
Chest wall defects may occur in children at any age, though most are seen at around age 10 and the majority are in boys. There are two types:
- Sunken chest (pectus excavatum), the cause of which is unclear
- Pigeon chest (pectus carinatum), which results from abnormal growth of the cartilage in the chest, causing the chest wall to curve outward
Children with either condition should be referred to a pediatric surgeon for evaluation as soon as the condition is observed, since it usually becomes more severe over time.
For more information, contact Sunghoon Kim, MD, at email@example.com.
Nerve Blocks Reduce Use of Opioids for Postoperative Pain Management
Nerve blocks and other medications have reduced the use of opioids for postoperative pain management in pediatric surgery. At UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, approximately 1,000 nerve blocks are safely administered every year.
Benefits of nerve blocks include the following:
- They enable the use of smaller doses of anesthesia during surgery, and smaller doses of pain medication post-surgery.
- They serve as a bridge to faster recovery and discharge because of less postoperative pain.
Other alternatives to opioids currently in use are IV administration of acetaminophen, ketamine or ketorolac.
The Department of Anesthesiology offers a pain management service that supports patients with chronic and acute pain. For information or questions about this service, contact Stephen Long, MD, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Vertebral Tethering Offers Option for Treating Scoliosis
UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals are one of only four medical centers in the United States performing vertebral tethering to treat scoliosis. Surgery is recommended for treating scoliosis in children with spine curvature of over 50 degrees.
Vertebral tethering was introduced about 15 years ago. The technique involves placing screws in the curved vertebrae, which are connected by a tether that acts as a rope to prevent further curvature in the scoliosis plane. Vertebral tethering has several advantages over spine fusion, the more common surgical treatment for scoliosis:
- Tethering conserves spine mobility.
- The spine may end up growing straight if the child has enough growth remaining.
For more information or to refer a patient, please call (877) 822-4453 or (877) UC-CHILD.
Coleen Sabatini, MD, MPH to deliver keynote address at UCSF Pediatric Musculoskeletal Conference, June 25
Register now for the inaugural UCSF Pediatric Musculoskeletal Conference for Primary Care Providers – a virtual conference to be held on June 25. The keynote speaker will be Coleen Sabatini, MD, MPH, a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon and UCSF vice chair of Health Equity and Academic Affairs. To learn more, visit http://tiny.ucsf.edu/PedsMSK.