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Journal: Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992)


Many countries have closed schools and kindergartens to minimise COVID-19, but the role that children play in disease transmission is unclear.


According to the United Nations Educational, Science and Cultural Organization, 194 countries had implemented country-wide school closures by April 1st 2020 in an effort to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s estimated that those closures affected 91.3% of students across the globe. However, Sweden adopted a different approach to the strict lockdowns imposed elsewhere and day care centres and schools for children up to 15 years of age remained open. The strategy decision to shift schools to distance learning only for children aged 16 years and older was influenced by multiple factors, including the potential impact on school closures on the availability of the healthcare work force, the increasing evidence of mainly mild infections among children and the potential negative consequences of school closures for younger children.


The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has affected hundreds of thousands of people. Data on symptoms and prognoses in children are rare.


To evaluate the effect of breastfeeding on long (breast carcinoma, ovarian carcinoma, osteoporosis and type-2 diabetes mellitus) and short term (lactational amenorrhea, postpartum depression, postpartum weight change) maternal health outcomes.

Concepts: Diabetes mellitus


Caregiver-child reading is advocated by health organisations, citing cognitive and neurobiological benefits. The influence of home literacy environment (HLE) on brain structure prior to kindergarten has not previously been studied.


AIMS: To test the hypothesis that exposure to ambient language in the womb alters phonetic perception shortly after birth. This two-country study aimed to see if neonates demonstrated prenatal learning by how they responded to vowels in a category from their native language and another nonnative language, regardless of how much postnatal experience the infants had. METHOD: A counterbalanced experiment was conducted in Sweden (n=40) and the USA (n=40) using Swedish and English vowel sounds. The neonates (mean postnatal age = 33 hrs) controlled audio presentation of either native or nonnative vowels by sucking on a pacifier, with the number of times they sucked their pacifier being used to demonstrate what vowel sounds attracted their attention. The vowels were either the English /i/ or Swedish /y/ in the form of a prototype plus 16 variants of the prototype. RESULTS: The infants in the native and nonnative groups responded differently. As predicted, the infants responded to the unfamiliar nonnative language with higher mean sucks. They also sucked more to the nonnative prototype. Time since birth (range: 7-75 hours) did not affect the outcome. CONCLUSION: The ambient language to which foetuses are exposed in the womb starts to affect their perception of their native language at a phonetic level. This can be measured shortly after birth by differences in responding to familiar vs. unfamiliar vowels. ©2012 The Author(s)/Acta Paediatrica ©2012 Foundation Acta Paediatrica.

Concepts: Pregnancy, Childbirth, Infant, Fetus, Linguistics, International Phonetic Alphabet, English language, Vowel


To evaluate the accuracy of our new rapid point-of-care (POC) test for lung maturity. The method as we describe in an accompanying article, was developed with the purpose of improving the outcome from respiratory distress syndrome (RDS). The test enables the delivery of surfactant in infants with immature lungs already at birth, and ensures that infants with mature lungs are not treated unnecessarily.


I have read with interest the review by Ludvigsson on the role of children as transmitters of the new coronavirus (SARS-COV-2). An in-depth review of the current literature focused on 40 published articles and 7 non-peer reviewed papers1 . All the papers included have been done under lockdown conditions. As a consequence, we should not ignore a main bias of this review1 . The main conclusion we can draw now is that under confined conditions, children are not the main drivers of the COVID-19 pandemic. And “Confined” is not a normal situation.


To systematically reviewing the evidence on the associations between breastfeeding and overweight/obesity, blood pressure, total cholesterol, and type-2 diabetes.

Concepts: Myocardial infarction, Hypertension, Insulin, Diabetes mellitus, Obesity, Systematic review, Blood pressure, Artery


Aim:  Do different clothing styles have an influence on the doctor-patient-parent relationship and which kind of outfit is preferred by children and parents. Methods:  One hundred and seven children and 72 parents were visited by a paediatrician randomly wearing one of the three different outfits (casual, semiformal, formal) during a hospital stay. Parents and children between 6 and 18 years were then interviewed about their opinion by use of a semi-structured questionnaire, while children between 0 and 6 years were observed concerning their behaviour during the examination. Results:  Using a ‘likert scale’, the casual outfit received the best mark by 95.5% of parents (58.3% in the semiformal, 30.8% in the formal group). The degree of the parents' trust in the paediatrician was comparable in all three groups. In children between 6 and 18 years, the casual dress was rated highest in 100%. In children between 0 and 6 years, the outfit had no significant influence on the patients' behaviour. Conclusion:  Apparently, parents do not only tolerate a casual outfit, but even prefer it without any loss of trust. The same holds true for children between 6 and 18 years. For younger children, the paediatricians' outfit seems to play no major role.

Concepts: Motivation, Scale, Preference, Degree of a polynomial, Likert scale, Clothing, Dress code, Casual