"THE HEART OF THE MATTER"
a special program of the National Emergency Medicine Association (NEMA)
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Guest: Dr. Anna Taddio, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario
Topic: Pain relief during circumcision
Host/ Producer: Steve Girard
NEMA: Circumcision pain relief...coming up...
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NEMA: Newborn boys don't feel or remember the pain of their circumcision. That was the general consensus for many years...but a study has shown the use of a numbing cream applied to the baby before circumcision reduced the pain. This is researcher Dr. Anna Taddio of the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto...
TADDIO: Circumcision may be associated...and other painful procedures...may be associated with some change in the central nervous system, and how the baby reacts to pain later on in life. So that there is a pain memory.
NEMA: The study concluded that the early pain experience seems to make subsequent painful procedures, like getting an injection, worse than those babies who did not suffer the pain of circumcision. Dr. Taddio says conclusions that the cream is safe and effective have begun changing minds in the medical community...
TADDIO: So we've made people be more aware that infants feel pain, and that there are ways to alleviate it. We're hopeful that in the future, people will look at combining different kinds of medication to try to prevent the pain totally.
NEMA: Studies on the effectiveness of the Emla cream have appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine and the journal Science. I'm Steve Girard at The Heart of the Matter.
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Last modified: May 15, 2022