School of nursing

School Notes: School of Nursing
January/February 2007

Research contributes to federal approval of autism drug

 study carried out at Yale and four other universities has led to FDA approval of the antipsychotic drug risperidone for the treatment of children with autism accompanied by tantrums, aggression, and self-injurious behavior. This is the first time the FDA has approved any medication for use in children and adolescents with autism. The study was conducted by the Research Units of Pediatric Psychopharmacology (RUPP) Autism Network, which is funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health. Lawrence Scahill, professor of nursing and child psychiatry at Yale and the director of the RUPP Autism Network at the Yale Child Study Center, was one of the principal investigators for the study. “Our findings broke new ground in the treatment of autism. For the first time, we have data on both the short- and longer-term benefits of medication for children with autism,” he said, adding, “The FDA approval was based in large part on a federally funded study—rather than an industry-sponsored study—so this approval is a welcomed translation of clinical research to policy.”

Distinguished alumna honored for her “life journey”

Sharon Schindler Rising '67 was named the School of Nursing’s 2006 Distinguished Alumna for her work as a clinical scholar, teacher, educational program director, inventor, entrepreneur, politician, and nurse-midwife. The presentation was made at the YSN reunion in October. Rising’s dedication to providing high-quality, cost-effective, and sensitive prenatal care led her to establish the Centering Pregnancy Program, an innovative method of prenatal health care delivery that involves group support and provider facilitation. Based on a model she developed at the University of Minnesota, the program is now available at 50 sites in the United States, Canada, and Australia, including Yale–New Haven Hospital.

YSN faculty contribute to nursing journal

As guest editor of the December issue of Nursing Clinics of North America, Independence Foundation Professor Gail D'Eramo Melkus brought together the country’s leading experts in diabetes to contribute material on the latest advances in the care of diabetes and diabetes-related complications. YSN faculty writing for this issue include Andrea Dann Urban and YSN dean Margaret Grey '76MSN, who wrote about the challenges of managing and treating Type 1 diabetes; and Deborah Chyun '82 and the Medical School’s Larry Young, whose article “Diabetes Mellitus and Cardiovascular Disease” addresses the risks of heart disease in diabetes patients.

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