Potential Online

Q&A: Ask the Expert

June 3, 2011
In order to address our readers’ interests and needs more directly, Touch magazine is launching an “Ask the Expert” column. If you have a question about a pediatric developmental disorder, send it to us via e-mail atasktheexpert@kennedykrieger.org

KKI Joins National Child Traumatic Stress Network Family Center to use $1.6 million grant to improve care of traumatized children

June 3, 2011

Each year, more than 900,000 American children experience some type of trauma—physical or sexual abuse, community violence, family crises. For nearly two decades, Kennedy Krieger’s Family Center has helped children in the Baltimore area recover from abuse, neglect, out-of-home placement and other traumatic events. In October, the Center became one of 54 members of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN), a two-year-old federal initiative designed to improve the treatment of traumatized children throughout the United States.

Letter from our President

The understanding and treatment of developmental disabilities have come a long way over the past century. As we reflect on the last 70 years since the founding of the Kennedy Krieger Institute, the past is not always bright, but there are people and moments that stand out as beacons of progress. President John F. Kennedy worked passionately to pass landmark legislation that forever changed the field of developmental disabilities for the better. But as we look forward, we can see that there is still much work to be done in our institutions, schools, and communities.

Letter from our President

When someone you love lives through a horrific accident, the first impulse is to rejoice in their survival. But often, the immediate aftermath of an accident is just the first step in a long, sometimes arduous journey to recovery. Some elements of their “previous” life may return, but others are often changed irrevocably. That’s been the case for the Frost family. A December 2004 car accident left two of the Frost children with serious brain injuries.

Letter from our President

Most of the children we treat at Kennedy Krieger deal with challenges created by disorders that no one could possibly have predicted or prevented. And while we can provide them with medications, therapies and other programs designed to help them live the most fulfilling lives possible, we are rarely able to completely remedy our patient’s difficulties.

That’s why we’re so excited about our newest program, the Cranial-Cervical Clinic. The clinic treats torticollis, or head tilting, and plagiocephaly, or flattening of the skull. Left untreated,

The Study of Epigenetics

Martie
Callaghan

Are your genes turned on?

When scientists began The Human Genome Project in the early 1990s, their hope was to discover and interpret the entire blueprint for life, to decode not only how the human body is put together, but also to find the genetic cause and cure for every disease. Imagine their surprise when they discovered not the anticipated 100,000 genes, but rather 20,000 genes making up the human genome—about the same as that of fish and mice, and less than many plants!

Letter From Our President

At the Kennedy Krieger Institute, we believe that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to treating children with developmental disorders. Across the Institute, from our pediatric feeding disorders program to our pain management clinic, our dedicated doctors, researchers, therapists, and educators work with each child and family to tailor a treatment plan that will meet their needs.

Looking for an Alternative to Embryonic Stem Cells

Martie
Callaghan
Researchers hope that iPS cells may some day function as embryonic stem cells without the controversy

In 2009, the FDA approved the use of human embryonic stem cell-based therapy for the treatment of patients with spinal cord injuries. Cell-based therapy — the use of human cells transplanted into the human body to promote healing — is not a futuristic concept. Bone marrow transplant, for example, is a cell-based therapy that was proven to be safe and effective more than 50 years ago. Stem cells are particularly useful in these cell-based therapies because they are both immortal and flexible, meaning they can divide without end and they can become almost any type of cell.

Letter From Our President

Neurorehabilitation is a cornerstone of virtually everything we do at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. Founded in 1937 as the Children’s Rehabilitation Institute, Kennedy Krieger is an international resource with a strong tradition of providing comprehensive rehabilitative services for children with disorders of the brain, spinal cord, and musculoskeletal system. We offer a full continuum of programs, from inpatient and outpatient to day treatment and home care services, to help our patients achieve optimal outcomes throughout the entire course of care and their lives.

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