Departmental Seminars

Every week on Monday, until 10 Nov 2019

2019 Seminars Series

(no RSVP required)

Light lunch served from 12.20pm

Next Seminars:

Low-grade intraventricular haemorrhage: a risk for developing motor dysfunction.
Monday 26 August 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B

Nicky Hollebrandse, Medical Student
University of Groningen, The Netherlands

Background: Children born extremely preterm (EP; <28 weeks of gestational age) are at risk of intraventricular haemorrhage (IVH). While survival rates of EP children have increased, few studies have reported the associations between lower grades of IVH on school age outcome. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the associations of different grades of IVH with neurodevelopmental outcomes at 8 years of age in children born EP.

Methods: Participants comprised consecutive children born EP in the state of Victoria, Australia, in 1991-1992, (24 months) 1997 (12 months), and 2005 (12 months). Severity of IVH was assessed using serial neonatal cranial ultrasound. Contemporaneous term born controls matched to expected due date and social variables were also recruited. At 7 to 8 years of age intellectual performance, academic performance, executive function and motor function were assessed and outcomes in children born EP were adjusted relative to the outcomes of term-born controls.

Results: Increasing severity of IVH in EP children was associated with more intellectual, academic and motor dysfunction, but not with executive function. There were no significant differences in the proportions with cognitive, academic or executive dysfunction in those with grade 1 and 2 IVH compared with children without IVH. However, increasing rates of any motor dysfunction and of cerebral palsy were observed in children with grade 1 and 2 IVH compared with children without IVH with an increased risk of developing CP.

Conclusion: Low grade IVH is associated with higher rates of motor dysfunction in school-age children born EP, but not cognition, academic performance or executive function.

In mechanically ventilated preterm infants, does extubation to a higher CPAP pressure, compared to a standard pressure, reduce the risk of extubation failure?
Monday 2 September 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B

Anna Kidman, PhD Candidate
Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology,The University of Melbourne

Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) is a well observed outcome of prematurity. RDS often leads to bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) which remains the major pulmonary morbidity in premature infants during hospitalisation, and throughout their later lifespan. Due to the immature nature of the extremely preterm lung, many infants require intubation and ventilation in the first days of life to support respiration and or administer surfactant. This mechanical intubation and ventilation is shown in the literature to be damaging to the developing lung, with time ventilated being proportionate to risk of subsequent BPD. Thus, it is necessary for short durations of intubation and the optimisation of various non-invasive respiratory supports. Currently around the world, infants <28 weeks experience extubation failure 60% of the time. This extubation failure contributes to a number of morbidities such as, BPD, delayed feeding and delayed family unit boding. My thesis addresses this by investigating whether a higher Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) pressure post extubation will reduce extubation failure thus, improving outcomes for extremely preterm infants.

CPAP is a devise that delivers continuous distending pressure of 4cmH2O - 15cmH2O into the lungs via a non-invasive interface. CPAP, via a facemask, was first described in neonates in 1971. CPAP, largely due to its longevity in medicine and ease of application, is an extremely cost-effective solution for RDS. It is hypothesised that CPAP maintains adequate functional residual capacity within the alveoli of the lung, preventing atelectasis and improving gas exchange within the pulmonary circulation through the delivery of constant positive pressure. Common practice sees varying levels of positive pressure from 4 cmH20 to 10 cmH2O with a median pressure of 5 cmH2O at extubation. As previously mentioned my study is comparing pressures of 6-8 cm H2O with 9-11 cm H2O.

Due to the assumed mechanism of action of CPAP, it has been hypothesised in several small studies that higher levels of CPAP (> 8 cmH20) could minimise extubation failure in the extremely preterm population.

Environmental chemicals and fertility: A handmaid's tale
Monday 9 September 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B

Dr Mark Green, Merck Serono Senior Lecturer
School of BioSciences,The University of Melbourne

In the last 70 years we have experienced an exponential increase in the production of man-made chemicals and our exposure to them. Exposure to these chemicals has been associated with the concurrent increase in various diseases and disorders, including a rise in infertility in both humans and wildlife. This seminar will highlight our growing understanding of how environmental chemicals, specifically endocrine disruptors found in plasticisers and pesticides, can negatively affect our fertility as well as their multigenerational consequences.

Endometriosis management in Australia: Women’s experiences,
Monday 16 September 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B

Beck O'Hara, PhD Student
School of Public Health and Preventative Medicine, Monash University

This presentation will provide an overview of the findings from the Endometriosis Management in Australia Study. This project was a mixed methods study involving a national survey (n=620) and interviews (n=15) with women diagnosed with endometriosis. Women’s symptoms, health service usage and their experiences with managing endometriosis in Australia will be discussed.

Characterisation of Endometriotic Lesion
Monday 23 September 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B

Eliza Colgrave, PhD Student
The University of Melbourne, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology

Endometriotic lesions are diagnostic of the common gynaecological disease, endometriosis. To diagnose endometriosis a pathologist identifies endometrial-like glands and stroma in surgically removed lesions. Features beyond these are not factored into diagnosis and treatment selection for patients, which is unlike other diseases. This project has been investigating an array of microscopic features in endometriotic lesions using histology, immunohistochemistry and second-harmonic generation microscopy. The results to date have revealed an incredible diversity of lesion presentations, suggesting no single characteristic is sufficient to phenotype all endometriotic lesions.

Monday 30 September 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B
Gerard Tarulli
University of Melbourne

Monday 7 October 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B
Catherine Voutier
Melbourne Health

Monday 14 October 2019 - 12.30pm - Level 7, RWH Hospital Seminar Room 7A/B
Jennifer Marino
University of Melbourne

Any queries regarding this seminar, please contact Kathryn Ryan