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Infants with untreated congenital hypoglycemia are at risk for seizures or even permanent brain damage. Congenital hyperinsulinism (CHI) is the most common cause of hypoglycemia in infants more than 3 days old. Therefore, early intervention is a very important factor in preventing irreversible damage and improving quality of life. As one of only 2 programs dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of hyperinsulinism in the U.S., the Cook Children's Hyperinsulinism Center offers the state-of-the-art technology, advanced medical treatments and the very best care available to patients and families facing this diagnosis.
When your child is admitted to Cook Children's Hyperinsulinism Center, you can trust that your little one will receive the best possible medical treatment. Just as importantly, your child will be surrounded by one of the most recognized hyperinsulinism teams nationwide. While this disorder is rare (only about 1 in 50,000 births annually), if left untreated for an extended period of time, it can cause significant damage to a child's health. Fortunately, at Cook Children's you'll find an experienced team of highly-skilled physicians specializing in endocrinology, pediatric surgery, neonatology, neurology, gastroenterology, pathology and radiology. Our team also is supported by a dedicated hyperinsulinism nurse, social worker, clinical therapist, Child Life specialist, nutritionists and feeding and speech therapists. All who work closely with patients and families to provide the most effective treatment plan and family-centered care possible.
There are many forms of CHI with more being discovered each year. Typically, 60 percent of patients with genetic forms will present in the first week of life with hypoglycemia. Early identification and treatment of these genetic forms of CHI is critical to preventing long-term effects. Because the treatment of each form of this disorder is different, it is crucial to diagnose the exact form of CHI, which may include:
Children who are newly diagnosed with hyperinsulinism are admitted to Cook Children's Medical Center to receive a comprehensive medical evaluation. The medical staff will work closely with the family and the patient to teach them the skills necessary to manage the disease in their daily life. After leaving the medical center, routine follow-up care will continue in an outpatient specialty clinic. Depending on the type of hyperinsulinism and the treatment plan, the initial admission is two weeks to three months.
The Endowed Chair program is a significant commitment to Cook Children's Promise and will provide the funding our physicians need to support their efforts to improve the health of our children and community. The first recipient in the Endocrinology program is Dr. Paul Thornton.
Dr. Thornton’s Endowed Chair will help to further the work of Cook Children’s Congenital Hyperinsulinism Center, which has a national reputation and continues to gain prominence. As one of only two such centers in the country, it positions this program as a leader in clinical research in hypoglycemia and will enable the development of the latest diagnostic and therapeutic interventions for patients with Hyperinsulinism in Texas, the south and western United States.
You'll find more information on the many types of congenital hyperinsulinism, their treatments and outcomes here.
A helpful guide to prepare for your child's treatment at Cook Children's Hyperinsulinism Center can be found here.
Cook Children's partners with referring physicians in evaluations, advice, and management of care. We also offer a nationally recognized treatment program. Learn more about how we can help your patients.
As one of only 2 hyperinsulinism treatment centers in the U.S., and the only center in the southern U.S., patients come to us from all across the country. Our Teddy Transport team is always at the ready to provide the fastest transport for your little one. Learn more here.
There are times when additonal care is required once your child goes home. In this case, your child's pediatrician may make a referal to Cook Children's Home Health. To learn more about the services offered, explore here.
Should your child be admitted to the Cook Children's Hyperinsulinism Center for care, we offer an array of support services for patients, parents and families. The Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth is located very near Cook Children's Medical Center and provides a home-away-from home for families during their child's stay.
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