Lipid Screening and Treatment Recommendations for Children and Adolescents

Pediatric Annals (Impact Factor: 0.61). 07/2012; 41(7):1-10. DOI: 10.3928/00904481-20120625-08
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: Identifying risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD) early in life gives advanced practice nurses an opportunity to educate parents about choices that promote long-term heart health. The addition of universal lipid screening to 9- to 11-year-old well-child examinations opens a time interval that is adequate for conversations related to cardiovascular health. The objective of this study was to determine if the use of a 10-minute health promotion plan that includes identification of child modifiable CVD risk factors would have an effect on parental intent to engage in lifestyle changes that promote heart health in 9- to 11-year-old children. The quasi-experimental pilot study involved 26 English-speaking parents of 9- to 11-year-old children during routine well-child examinations. Participants completed questionnaires before and after receiving a health promotion plan and the child's modifiable CVD risk screening results. The advanced practice nurse-researcher analyzed the questionnaires to evaluate parental intent to promote lifestyle changes. Increases were seen in concern for the child's future heart health and in awareness of diet and exercise recommendations. Participants were likely to encourage more fruits and vegetables (100%), limit "screen time" (96%), encourage physical activity (92%), and limit sugar-sweetened beverage intake (96%). Factors identified as most influential on participant decision to encourage change were the child's body mass index (38.46%), lipid screening results (23.08%), and "other"-tobacco smoke exposure (15.38%), which closely approximate national prevalence for each risk category. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends lipid screening once for all children between 9 and 11 years of age. In this study, outlining recommendations for good health and identifying modifiable CVD risk factors showed a positive effect on parental intent to encourage lifestyle changes. Further research is needed to advance the science of CVD prevention and risk reduction in children.
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