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Newborns with heart defect have low blood flow in brain before surgery

a scarring of white matter in the brain. PVL has often been linked to neurological problems such as attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder in infants without heart disease. More severe forms of PVL have been associated with cerebral palsy in infants who are born prematurely.

A previous study by the same multidisciplinary team at Children's Hospital found PVL to be common before surgery in newborns with congenital heart disease. The current study could not determine whether the low blood flow levels caused the PVL, but those levels may be useful in guiding future treatments. "If we can define early markers for injury severity or injury risk, we may be able to better identify newborn babies who could benefit from protective therapies, thereby improving their quality of life," said Dr. Licht.

Dr. Licht is a Pfizer Scholar and is also supported by the W.W. Smith Charitable Trust. Dr. Licht's co-authors were Jiongjiong Wang, Ph.D., David W. Silverstre, B.S., Susan C. Nicolson, M.D., Lisa M. Montenegro, M.D., Gil Wernovsky, M.D., Sarah Tabbutt, M.D., Ph.D., Suzanne M. Durning, R.R.T., David M. Shera, Ph.D., J. William Gaynor, M.D., Thomas L. Spray, M.D., Robert R. Clancy, M.D., and Robert A. Zimmerman, M.D., all from the Neuro-Cardiac Research Program of The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and John A. Detre, M.D., of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.


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Contact: John Ascenzi
Ascenzi@email.chop.edu
267-426-6055
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
7-Dec-2004


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