02 April 2015 Volume :3 Issue :10

Wheeze in Young Children: Who To Treat and With What

Wheeze in Young Children: Who To Treat and With What
At a recent talk at UKZN are (from left) Professor Prakash Jeena, Professor Refiloe Masekela and Professor Peter Sly.

Wheezing was the subject of attention at a recent presentation at UKZN.

Professor Peter Sly, Director of Children’s Health and Environment Programme at Queensland Children’s Medical Research Institute (QCMRI) in Brisbane, Australia, spoke on the subject under the title: “Wheeze in Young Children: Who to Treat and With What.”

UKZN’s Discipline of Padiatrics heard Sly touch on issues of diagnosis and the differential diagnosis of wheezing in the pre-school child, a common challenge in paediatric practice where children are frequently misdiagnosed as asthmatics.

Faced with the global challenge of the escalating incidence of childhood lung diseases, Sly seeks to identify and develop preventative strategies for children at great risk.

According to Sly, there is an increasing recognition that most chronic adult diseases have their origin in childhood, especially respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. ‘My research aims to understand the mechanisms underlying chronic childhood lung diseases in order to improve clinical management and to delay or prevent their onset, with consequent reductions in adult lung diseases.

‘A combination of basic science, longitudinal cohort studies and translation of research findings into clinical practice, including clinical trials, are included in three main areas: asthma, cystic fibrosis and children’s environmental health.’

Head of Department: Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Professor Refiloe Masekela, said Sly’s talk was an excellent overview on the approach to wheezing and it was beneficial to her staff and registrars.

Sly is currently collaborating with the Discipline’s Professors Raj Naidoo and Professor Prakash Jeena together with a team of investigators in the Paediatrics department on the Maternal and Child Exposures (MACE) trial.

He is a frequent speaker at international conferences and widely published in leading journals in his field.

Recognised internationally in the area of Children’s Environmental Health, Sly currently directs the Children’s Health and Environment Programme at the University of Queensland. He is also on the Advisory Board for the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Collaborative Agreement; is the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Pacific Basin Consortium for Environment and Health, and is an advisor to the WHO’s Public Health and Environment Section.

Sly is a National Health and Medical Research Council Senior Principal Research Fellow and a Paediatric Respiratory Physician with extensive research experience in Respiratory Physiology.

Nombuso Dlamini


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