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In This Issue of JAMA Pediatrics
July 2013


JAMA Pediatr. 2013;167(7):593. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.2150


The epidemiology of child victimization remains fragmented, with published studies on only limited portions of the age and exposure spectrum and only occasionally with a national scope. Finkelhor and colleagues reported on the findings of the National Survey of Children’s Exposure to Violence, which consisted of a national sample of 4503 children and youth. Two-fifths of children and youth experienced a physical assault in the last year, and 1 in 10 experienced an assault-related injury.

An increasing number of states are decriminalizing the use of medical marijuana, and the effect on the pediatric population has not been evaluated. Wang and colleagues compared marijuana ingestions by young children seeking care at a children’s hospital in Colorado before and after modification of drug enforcement laws regarding medical marijuana possession. The proportion of visits related to marijuana exposure increased from none to 2.4% of all visits. Editorials by Levy and by Hurley and Mazor discussed the toxic effects of marijuana and issues related to legalization of all marijuana.

Editorial, Editorial

Short sleep duration is common in adolescents and young adults, and short sleep duration is a risk factor for motor vehicle crash. Martiniuk and colleagues assessed the association between hours of sleep and the risk for motor vehicle crash among young drivers. Those who reported sleeping 6 or fewer hours per night had a 21% increased risk for crash, and a 55% increased risk for sleep deprivation on the weekend. In an accompanying editorial, Ebel discussed approaches to combat the problem of drowsy driving by youth.


Clinical Review & Education

There is increasing evidence that infections contribute to brain damage, which leads to adverse neurodevelopmental outcome in very preterm and very low-birth-weight (VLBW) infants. In a review, van Vliet and colleagues summarized 18 studies evaluating the effect of perinatal infections on neurodevelopmental outcome in very preterm and VLBW infants. Very preterm/VLBW infants with perinatal infections, especially necrotizing enterocolitis and meningitis, had poorer mental and motor development compared with very preterm/VLBW infants without infections.