Johns Hopkins Gazette: August 22, 1994


Symposium explores violence in the workplace

The Homewood Security Department, the Maryland Chiefs of
Police Association and the American Society of Industrial
Security conducted a conference on violence in the workplace
earlier this month.
    More than 200 representatives of business, industry,
medical care, education and law enforcement attended the
symposium, which was held in Mudd Hall.
    Craig D. Lowry, compliance chief of the Maryland
Occupational Safety and Health Office, told the crowd
employers may be required to protect workers susceptible to
on-the-job violence. Between 1980 and 1989, there were 180
workplace murders in Maryland; many of those were
preventable, Lowry said.
    FBI special agent Eugene Regala recommended that
employers be aware of their employees' work-related and
personal stresses and respond with sensitivity when problems

Donor egg program boosts pregnancy rate

Using donated eggs for in vitro fertilization at the Hop-kins
Program for Assisted Reproduction has vastly improved the
outlook for women who otherwise would 
not be able to have children. The success rate exceeds 
the favorable results from conventional in vitro
    Of the 15 patients who received donor eggs at Hopkins
during the past year, 47 percent have delivered or are
currently pregnant. In conventional in vitro fertilization,
where the patient's own eggs are fertilized, the success rate
nationwide is about 20 percent.
    "The rate of ongoing pregnancy is this high because    
the oocytes [eggs] have been donated by younger women, and
fertility is strongly influenced by age," said Anne Namnoum,
director of the in vitro fertilization program.
    The first birth from a donated embryo to a woman without
ovarian function occurred in 1984. Since then, oocyte
donation has become accepted procedure in most parts of the
world. The most common indications for donated oocytes
include premature ovarian failure, poor response to other
fertility therapy or genetic diseases.

Effective croup treatment discovered

Researchers at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and
the Johns Hopkins Children's Center have found an effective
treatment for mild to moderate cases of croup, a viral
infection of the trachea.
    Thousands of children suffer from croup each year. In
the past medical professionals have recommended treatment--a
painful injection--only for those severely affected or
hospitalized by the illness.
    Now doctors report croup symptoms improve promptly after
patients inhale the steroid drug budesonide, which is given
by nebulization, the method commonly used to provide medicine
to children with asthma.
    "For children with mild to moderate croup, we found that
budesonide began to work as soon as one hour after being
given," said Peter Rowe, associate professor at Hopkins who
worked at CHEO in the past. "This led to shorter stays for
children and parents in the emergency department and hospital
    Rowe said budesonide has had an excellent record of
safety in the years it has been used to treat asthma in
Europe and Canada. The drug is not yet available in the
United States; patients here will have to wait until it is
approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
    The results of the study were published in the Aug. 4
New England Journal of Medicine.

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