[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
The spectrum of neurologic disease attributable to Mycoplasma pneumoniae in children is incompletely understood in part because of limitations of microbiologic diagnostic methods. Our objective was to characterize the neurologic complications of M. pneumoniae in children using stringent diagnostic criteria.
All children admitted to the Hospital for Sick Children over a 16-year period with acute neurologic manifestations and polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-confirmed M. pneumoniae infection were eligible for inclusion. Cases were categorized as definite, probable, or possible according to strength of evidence implicating M. pneumoniae. Children with underlying noninfectious neurologic conditions or an alternative infectious cause were excluded.
A total of 365 children had M. pneumoniae detected in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) or respiratory tract by PCR, 42 (11.5%) of whom had neurologic disease attributable to M. pneumoniae. The most common clinical syndromes were encephalitis (52%), acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (12%), transverse myelitis (12%), and cerebellar ataxia (10%). Two distinct disease patterns were observed, one with a prolonged prodrome (≥7 days), respiratory manifestations, an immunoglobulin M (IgM) response in peripheral blood, and detection of M. pneumoniae in the respiratory tract, but not the CSF, and one with a brief (<7 days) or no prodrome, less frequent respiratory manifestations and IgM response, and detection of M. pneumoniae in the CSF, but not the respiratory tract.
Our findings support the hypothesis of two separate pathogenetic mechanisms for M. pneumoniae-associated neurologic disease, one related to direct infection of the central nervous system and one indirect, likely immunologically mediated.
No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Clinical Infectious Diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
To assess the safety and efficacy of antithrombotic therapy (ATT) for secondary stroke prevention of childhood bacterial meningitis.
A retrospective study of cases of stroke associated with bacterial meningitis in 2 pediatric hospitals during a period of 15 years. Patients were included in the study if they were between 28 days and 18 years of age and had at least 2 serial neuroimaging studies during the acute phase of their illness. The safety of ATT was assessed by the presence or absence of intracranial hemorrhage. Efficacy was assessed by the failure in preventing stroke recurrence. Neurologic outcome was determined by the last documented Pediatric Stroke Outcome Measure score.
Twenty-two cases of childhood bacterial meningitis complicated by stroke were identified. Six cases were treated with heparin after either initial or recurrent infarction. None of the cases receiving heparin had further recurrence. Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid [ASA]) was started after the initial or after recurrent infarction in 10 cases. Four (40%) had infarctions on ASA; 3 of these patients subsequently received heparin. In the 14 cases in which no ATT was begun, 8 (57%) had further recurrence of infarction. None of the patients, whether receiving heparin or ASA, had intracranial hemorrhage.
In this small sample, heparin and ASA appeared to be safe in childhood bacterial meningitis complicated by stroke and may be effective in improving outcome. Heparin may be more effective than aspirin in preventing recurrent infarction.
No preview · Article · Jul 2014 · Journal of Pediatrics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
To describe the spectrum of central nervous system complications of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) in children admitted to The Hospital for Sick Children between January 1999 and December 2012.
Children aged 1 month to 18 years (n = 84) admitted with neurologic manifestations associated with a characteristic VZV rash or a confirmatory laboratory test (positive lesion scraping or cerebrospinal fluid polymerase chain reaction) were included in the study. Acute neurologic complications were included if they occurred within 4 weeks of VZV infection. Stroke was considered related to VZV if it occurred within 6 months of VZV infection, the neuroimaging was characteristic, and other causes were excluded.
Clinical syndromes included acute cerebellar ataxia (n = 26), encephalitis (n = 17), isolated seizures (n = 16), stroke (n = 10), meningitis (n = 10), Guillain-Barré syndrome (n = 2), acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (n = 2), and Ramsay Hunt syndrome (n = 1). In those with acute complications (nonstroke), neurologic symptoms occurred a median of 5 days after rash onset (range -6 to +16). The time between rash onset and stroke ranged from 2 weeks to 26 weeks (median 16.0 weeks). Three children with encephalitis died. Residual neurologic sequelae at one year occurred in 9 of 39 (23%) of children with follow-up data. Only 4 children were reported to have received the varicella vaccine.
Neurologic complications of VZV infection continue to occur despite the availability of an effective vaccine. Neurologic symptom onset can predate the appearance of the VZV exanthem and in rare cases may occur in the absence of an exanthem.
No preview · Article · Jul 2014 · Journal of Pediatrics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Primary human herpesvirus 7 (HHV-7) infection occurs almost universally during the first 5 years of life and is rarely accompanied by central nervous system (CNS) symptoms such as febrile seizures. The present retrospective study investigated the role of primary HHV-7 infection in CNS disease in children, including adolescents.
The study included all children who had neurologic disease aged younger than 18 years seen at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada, between April 1, 1998 and December 31, 2011, whose cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was found by polymerase chain reaction to contain HHV-7 DNA. Where sera were available, HHV-7 IgG antibody titers and avidity were measured to differentiate primary from past infection.
HHV-7 DNA was detected in the CSF of 57 (1.9%) of the 2972 children tested. In 3 adolescents primary HHV-7 infection (low avidity IgG) was confirmed as the cause of neurologic disease, 2 who had encephalitis and 1 who had Guillain-Barré syndrome. Eighteen children had possible HHV-7 disease (no alternative cause identified and indeterminate antibody result or serum not available), 7 encephalitis, 8 meningitis, and 3 demyelinating disorders. HHV-7 disease was excluded in 36 children on the basis of past infection (high IgG avidity) and/or an alternative cause.
Primary HHV-7 infection delayed into adolescence can cause serious neurologic disease. HHV-7 DNA in CSF alone is insufficient to prove an etiologic association. Combining CSF polymerase chain reaction with serology is essential to prove primary infection when investigating HHV-7 CNS disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This book provides recommendations for evaluation and therapy in the area of acute pediatric neurology; these are presented didactically with frequent use of illustrations and algorithms. Chapters in the first part of the book discuss presenting symptoms of acute neurological conditions. The second part of the book covers major areas of acute pediatric neurology and each of these chapters has three key elements: description of presenting symptoms; recommended assessments; and recommended interventions.
Acute Pediatric Neurology provides an accessible, clinically focused guide to assist physicians in the emergency ward or intensive care unit in decisions on diagnosis and therapeutic interventions in all major acute pediatric neurological diseases.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objectives:
To describe our experiences in the management of the second wave of influenza A H1N1 (pH1N1) pandemic in a tertiary-care children's hospital.
An autoethnographic study of the pandemic planning and management committee members involved in managing the second wave of pH1N1 was conducted.
Staffing, surge capacity, communications and emergency operations planning by adding leaders of frontline workers and other key operational roles to the incident management team, and creating a tactical response team emerged as important factors in pandemic management in our hospital. The emergency department visits increased by 50%, necessitating increased staffing of the emergency department. Communications using existing chains of command had to be used to reach frontline staff during the pandemic.
Incident management teams managing pandemics and other disasters have to be dynamic and create tactical teams to ensure implementation and facilitate bidirectional communication with frontline workers.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2013 · Clinical Pediatrics
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aim:
To describe outcomes and outcome predictors in childhood basilar artery stroke (BAS).
We prospectively enrolled children with BAS with or without basilar artery occlusion (BAO) in the Toronto Children's Stroke Registry from 1992 to 2009. We assessed presenting features and outcomes including Pediatric Stroke Outcome Measure scores.
Among 578 children with acute arterial ischemic stroke, 27 had BAS (4.6% including neonates, 6% excluding neonates). Twenty-four (14 males, 10 females) children met study criteria (mean age at stroke was 8 y 10 mo; range 0-17 y). Eleven children had BAO. Aspirin or anticoagulation was given to 15 children. None received tissue plasminogen activator or endovascular treatments. At mean follow-up (3 y 2 mo, range 1 mo-11 y 8 mo), 12 had a 'good outcome' (seven normal, five insignificant deficit) and 12 had 'poor outcome' (10 moderate or severe deficit, two acute deaths). Larger infarct size (≥50% of axial brainstem diameter) independently predicted poor outcome (p=0.02; odds ratio 21.2, 95% confidence interval 1.6-274.9) but not BAO, altered level of consciousness, or age.
Compared with adults, in childhood BAS death is rare and survivors frequently have good outcomes. Aggressive endovascular interventions may not be justifiable in this population.
No preview · Article · Feb 2013 · Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aim:
Wallerian degeneration is a radiological finding thought to reflect corticospinal tract degeneration. This finding on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is routinely used as a predictor of poor prognosis in childhood stroke. However, its validity has never been established. Our objective was to correlate Wallerian degeneration seen on MRI with histopathology.
We searched the databases of the Department of Pathology and Children's Stroke registry at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto for autopsy specimens exhibiting focal infarcts from children born at term who underwent MRI after a stroke. The specimens were examined for Wallerian degeneration and then correlated with the pre-mortem MRI findings.
Seven children (four females, three males) with a median age of 11 years (1-17 y) at the time of stroke met the inclusion criteria for this study. Of the seven children included in the study with ischaemic or haemorrhagic infarcts, six had concordant Wallerian degeneration findings on both MRI and post-mortem histopathological examination. The median time between stroke and death was 20 days (3-1825 d).
Our results show for the first time that the radiographic finding of Wallerian degeneration is a valid biomarker of corticospinal tract degeneration in children who have had ischaemic or haemorrhagic stroke.
No preview · Article · Nov 2012 · Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pediatric arterial ischemic stroke (AIS) carries an important morbidity and mortality burden. Congenital heart disease (CHD) is among the most important risk factors for pediatric AIS. Data on stroke recurrence in childhood CHD are lacking, resulting in uncertainty regarding optimal strategies for preventing recurrence.
In the Canadian Pediatric Ischemic Stroke Registry-Toronto site, we identified children (birth to 18 years) with CHD diagnosed with AIS during 1992-2008. Data were abstracted from both stroke and cardiac surgery databases. Time-dependent outcomes (death and recurrent stroke) following sentinel stroke were parametrically modeled in competing risk analysis. Factors predicting stroke recurrence in parametric survival models were sought in parametric survival model analyses using backward variable selection of variables.
A total of 135 patients (19 with recurrence, 116 without recurrence) were studied. In competing risk analysis, 10 years following sentinel stoke, 27% had experienced a stroke recurrence, 26% had died, and 47% were alive and free from recurrence. Stroke recurrence risk decreased over time from sentinel stroke. Approximately 50% of patients were receiving anticoagulation at recurrence. Significant factors associated with recurrence included the presence of a mechanical valve, prothrombotic condition, and an acute infection at the time of sentinel stroke. Hazard of mortality after recurrence was similar to mortality after sentinel stroke (hazard ratio, 1.3; p = 0.75).
Stroke recurrence was relatively common in neonates and children with CHD. Identified groups of patients at increased risk may require more aggressive secondary prophylaxis, especially in the early poststroke period.
No preview · Article · Jul 2012 · Annals of Neurology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to monitor developmental progress and identify predictors of developmental outcomes at 2 years after operation in infants who underwent a surgical procedure with cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) at less than 3 months of age.
Patients (N=131 enrolled; N=106 assessed) less than 3 months of age at the time of cardiac operation were prospectively enrolled (years 1999-2003) and assessed at 8, 12, and 24 months after operation. Patients with preexisting conditions independently associated with poor neurodevelopmental outcomes were excluded. Fine and gross motor development was formally assessed at all 3 visits, and parent ratings of development across several domains were obtained. Neurodevelopment was formally assessed at 24 months of age using the Bayley Scales of Infant Development, 2nd edition (BSID-II) Mental Development Index score (MDI).
Significant gross motor difficulties were identified at 8 months of age (p<0.001) and, although improved by the 24-month assessment, remained lower than average. Fine motor skills showed a significant decrease from 8 to 24 months of age (p=0.001). Factors associated with poorer neurodevelopmental outcome (BSID-II MDI) at 24 months after operation included a diagnosis of univentricular anatomy or complex coarctation of the aorta, higher complexity of the surgical procedure, longer duration of hospital stay, and presence of complications in the postoperative period.
Children undergoing repair of congenital heart disease (CHD) still have impaired development 2 years after the operation. Observed patterns of development were specific to the skill being assessed and related to both anatomic complexity and increased complexity of care received.
No preview · Article · May 2012 · The Annals of thoracic surgery
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Pediatric Stroke Outcome Measure (PSOM) is an objective, disease-specific outcome measure containing 115 test items suitable for newborn to adult ages. The PSOM measures neurological deficit and function across 5 subscales: right sensorimotor, left sensorimotor, language production, language comprehension, and cognitive/behavior yielding a final 10-point deficit score. The goal of this study was to examine PSOM construct validity in measuring neurological outcome in pediatric stroke survivors and interrater reliability (IRR) for both prospective and retrospective scoring.
For construct validity, PSOM subscale scores were correlated with scores on standardized neuropsychological measures matched by functional domain. We assessed IRR by comparing same-day "live" PSOM scores from 2 independent raters in 10 children (prospective IRR) and by comparing PSOM scores estimated from medical dictations across 5 raters in another 10 children (retrospective IRR).
We analyzed PSOM scores from 203 children with ischemic stroke. PSOM subscales show good construct validity (ρ=0.2-0.4; P<0.05). PSOM subscale scores of normal/abnormal demonstrate strong agreement for domain-matched neuropsychology scores (alternative chance-corrected statistic=0.4-0.8). IRR was excellent with the 2 prospective raters' scores in almost perfect agreement (intraclass correlation coefficient, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.76-0.98). Retrospective IRR demonstrated strong agreement with an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.77 (95% CI, 0.56-0.92).
The PSOM is a valid and reliable outcome measure for pediatric stroke. It is useful for retrospective scoring from health records and prospective serial longitudinal outcome assessments and is ideally suited for prospective clinical trials in pediatric stroke.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pediatric arterial ischemic stroke (AIS) is increasingly diagnosed and carries significant risks of recurrence, morbidity, and mortality. Anticoagulant therapy (ACT) is commonly prescribed in childhood AIS. Hemorrhagic complication rates in pediatric stroke are unknown, and adult safety data are of limited applicability. We analyzed a prospectively enrolled cohort of children (aged 1 month-18 years) with acute AIS selected using standardized criteria for protocol-based ACT over 14-year period. We assessed ACT-associated intracranial hemorrhage (ICH), including frequency, clinical and radiologic characteristics, predictors, and outcome. Among 215 children with AIS, 123 received ACT within 7 days after diagnosis. During anticoagulation, 14 (11%) children developed new or increased ICH, all within 26 days from diagnosis. ICH was symptomatic in 5 (4%), asymptomatic in 9 (7%), and mild (European Cooperative Acute Stroke Study grades HI1 or HI2) in all but 1 child (ECASS PH-2). Long-term neurologic outcomes after ACT-associated ICH in survivors were abnormal in 73% (8/11). Comparably, 12 of 75 (16%) children treated without anticoagulation developed new or increased ICH on follow-up imaging (P = .3507). We conclude that ACT is relatively safe in children with AIS, with a 4% risk of symptomatic ICH. Based on the safety of ACT in our study, clinical trials of ACT in childhood AIS are warranted.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Moyamoya vasculopathy is characterized by progressive stenosis of the major arteries of the Circle of Willis, resulting in compromised cerebral blood flow and increased risk of stroke. The objectives of the current study were to examine intellectual and executive functioning of children with moyamoya and to evaluate the impact of moyamoya type, stroke (clinical or silent), vasculopathy laterality, and disease duration on neurocognitive abilities.
Thirty pediatric participants (mean age 10 y 10 mo, SD 4 y; 18 females, 12 males) completed age-appropriate Wechsler Intelligence Scales before any therapeutic revascularization procedures. Reports of executive function were obtained from parents and teachers using the Behavior Rating Index of Executive Function.
Children with moyamoya scored significantly lower than the test standardization samples on all indices of intelligence and ratings of executive functioning (p<0.001). Patients did not differ by type of moyamoya or history of stroke. Patients with bilateral disease and stroke scored significantly lower than those with unilateral disease on measures of overall intellectual function (p=0.035) and verbal comprehension (p=0.04). Deficits in metacognitive executive functions were also more pronounced in bilateral patients according to teacher ratings.
Children with moyamoya are at risk for intellectual and executive problems, exacerbated by bilateral disease and clinical stroke history.
Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital (formerly Bloorview Kids Rehab) is Canada's largest teaching hospital for pediatric rehabilitation and the only in-patient pediatric rehabilitation centre in Ontario. SickKids is a quaternary-level academic health sciences centre. The acute care neuroscience and trauma patient population at SickKids represents the largest volume of transitioning clients between the two organizations. For years, the number of medically unnecessary days associated with patients awaiting transfer from SickKids to Holland Bloorview for off-site rehabilitation was consistently driven by inefficient processes, multiple handovers, duplicitous efforts, fragmented communication and a lack of timely or complete referral information. Recognizing this situation as a threat to access, as well as a significant risk to patient health outcomes, SickKids and Holland Bloorview embarked on an exciting partnership (Kids in Transition: The Rehab Experience) as part of a larger Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care-funded initiative, the Flo Collaborative.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Predictors of quality of life can define potentially modifiable factors to increase favorable outcomes after pediatric stroke. Quality of life was measured using the Centre for Health Promotion's Quality of Life Profile (CHP-QOL) in 112 children surviving arterial ischemic stroke or cerebral sinovenous thrombosis at mean 3 years after stroke. Overall quality of life was poor in 17.8% children despite mean scores (3.52) in the "adequate" range. Quality of life related to school and play was most problematic and that related to physical and home environment was least problematic. Female gender, cerebral sinovenous thrombosis stroke, and older age at testing predicted reduced overall and domain-specific quality of life (P < .05), whereas neurological outcome and family socioeconomic status did not. Cognitive/behavioral deficit and low Verbal IQ adversely affected socialization and quality of life, especially among older children and females. Altered cognition/behavior has a major impact on quality of life after pediatric stroke. Implementation of ameliorative strategies warrants further study.
No preview · Article · Sep 2011 · Journal of child neurology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Neonatal cerebral sinovenous thrombosis is a frequent contributor to neonatal mortality and morbidity. Treatment is controversial, and reported clinical outcomes vary widely. Newborns with radiologically confirmed neonatal cerebral sinovenous thrombosis from 1992 to 2009 were prospectively followed in our Children's Stroke Clinic for standardized outcomes, including the Pediatric Stroke Outcome Measure. Outcomes were available in 90 of 104 (87%) neonates. Early outcomes included cerebral sinovenous thrombosis-associated death (5) and thrombus propagation (15 [6 associated with new venous infarcts]). Lack of anticoagulation predicted propagation (RR = 13; P = .0007). Complete thrombus recanalization occurred in 90% by 3 months. Late outcomes (median, 2.5 years) were epilepsy (15) and neurological disability (50), which included moderate-severe language (43), sensorimotor (38), and cognitive/behavioral (24) deficits. Overall, 61% had poor outcome (death/any deficit). Concurrent neurological comorbidity at diagnosis (odds ratio = 2.8; P = .029) predicted poor outcome. Clinical trials are urgently needed to establish more effective treatment strategies.
No preview · Article · May 2011 · Journal of child neurology