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Prog Transplant. 2002 Jun;12(2):86-91.

Developmental approach to pediatric transplantation.

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  • 1Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pa., USA.


Children who need or who have received an organ transplant endure many hospitalizations, procedures, and surgeries. These experiences are often traumatic for children, repeatedly causing intense fear and anxiety. How stressful situations are perceived and responded to by children depend on their cognitive, physical, emotional, and social development. Alternatively, the introduction and repetition of stressful hospitalizations and medical experiences can delay development in any of these areas. It is important that healthcare professionals recognize potentially stressful situations and know how to introduce appropriate interventions to ease anxiety and facilitate each child to reach his or her developmental potential. Healthcare professionals should also have an understanding of child development and the effect it has on the child's understanding and reaction to transplantation.

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