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Youth Health and Adolescent Medicine
Kang, Melissa, Rachel Skinner, Lena Sanci, and Susan Sawyer (Eds)
IP Communications / Softcover / 2013-05-01 / 0987290509
Child Psychiatry / Mind & Body
price: $90.00 (may be subject to change)
456 pages
Not in Stock, but usually ships within 2-3 weeks

In recent years we have seen a fresh focus on the health of adolescents and young adults in response to new understandings that the 12-24-year old age group has experienced less improvement in their health than have younger and older age groups and that the burden of illness in adolescents differs greatly from that in younger children and older adults, and from greater confidence in clinical responses.

But the principles of effective adolescent-health care are taught in few clinical-training programs, and clinicians from a range of disciplines report lacking confidence in engaging and communicating with young people, lacking training and support in managing complex mental-health issues and consequences of risk-taking behaviour, and uncertainty about medico-legal guidelines for managing younger adolescents.

This comprehensive and authoritative textbook on youth health and adolescent medicine is predominantly for clinicians and clinicians-in-training in a range of health-care disciplines and will provide a valuable framework for addressing these issues.

The book comprises four parts. In the first part, a conceptual understanding of adolescence and of the developmental, social, and cultural factors that impact on adolescent health and wellbeing is provided. A broad overview of young people’s health is included, and theoretical understandings of resilience and risk and protective factors are outlined. In part 2, a broad approach to youth-friendly health care is summarised; techniques and micro-skills for engaging young people in consultations are detailed; one chapter covers medico-legal issues. Part 3 covers common and important health issues, and part 4 complex, challenging, and ill-defined disorders in adolescence, and how adolescence impacts on and is impacted by them. In most chapters, case histories are used to illustrate key points about assessment and management.

Melissa Kang, S Rachel Skinner, Lena A Sanci, and Susan M Sawyer, and the specialist contributors they have brought to this first Australian textbook on youth health and adolescent medicine, have national and international reputations for their work in this field.

Brief Table of Contents:

Guide to colour plates

About the editors

Contributing authors



Chapter 1 What is adolescence and who are adolescents?
David Bennett and Fiona Robards

Chapter 2 The health of Australian young people
Melissa Kang

Chapter 3 Resilience, risk and protective factors in adolescence
John W Toumbourou, Craig A Olsson, Ian Williams, and Bill Hallam


Chapter 4 Youth-friendly practice
Melissa Kang and Lena A Sanci

Chapter 5 Medicolegal and ethical issues in adolescent health care
Melissa Kang and Jane Sanders


Chapter 6 Developmental learning disorders
Natalie Silove

Chapter 7 Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
Simon D Clarke and Michael R Kohn

Chapter 8 Intellectual Disability and Autistic Spectrum Disorder: psychiatric comorbidities in adolescence
David Dossetor

Chapter 9Normal and abnormal pubertal development
Kate Steinbeck and Sally Duke

Chapter 10 Obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes mellitus
Louise A Baur and Shubha Srinivasan

Chapter 11 Adolescent gynaecology
Sonia Grover and Melissa Kang

Chapter 12 Sexual and reproductive health
Henrietta Williams, Melissa Kang, and S Rachel Skinner

Chapter 13 Chronic illness in young people
Michele Yeo and Susan M Sawyer

Chapter 14 Transition from paediatric to adult care in chronic illness
Susan Towns and Lynne Brodie

Chapter 15 Youth mental health
Andrew M Chanen, Richard Fraser, and Mark Phelan

Chapter 16 Adolescent substance use
Yvonne Bonomo and Amanda Norman

Chapter 17 Eating disorders in adolescence
Michael R Kohn, Sloane Madden, Simon D Clarke, and Gail Anderson

Chapter 18 Common skin conditions in adolescence
Peter Hogan


Chapter 19 Headache
Mick Creati and Mark MacKay

Chapter 20 Chronic fatigue syndrome
Katherine Rowe

Chapter 21 Chronic abdominal pain
Donald Payne

Chapter 22 Somatising disorders
Andrew Court and Andrew Kennedy

Chapter 23 School non-attendance and school refusal
Donald Payne and Liz Hughes


About the Editors:

Dr Melissa Kang (MBBS MCH) is a primary care academic and clinician who has specialised in youth health for the past 20 years. She is a Senior Lecturer in the Discipline of General Practice at the University of Sydney, a Senior Career Medical Officer in Youth Health in Western Sydney Local Health District, and an Honorary Consultant to the NSW Centre for the Advancement of Adolescent Health.

Melissa trained in general practice from 1989 to 1993, and then worked in the Department of Adolescent Medicine at the Royal Alexandra Hospital for Children (now the Children’s Hospital at Westmead) for a further 9 years. Melissa completed a Master of Community Health in 1997 during which she conducted and published research into the sexual behaviour of adolescent girls and the prevalence of tuberculosis among homeless young people.

Melissa has worked in two areas of research: accessible primary health care for young people, and adolescent sexuality and sexual health. Melissa has published research into frameworks for better practice in youth health and models of youth-friendly health care. This body of work has informed state youth health policy and practice in both the health and education sectors. Melissa’s work in sexual health has led to her involvement on state and national government committees and advisory groups in relation to STI media campaigns, the Chlamydia program implementation committee, the NSW STI Programs Unit GP Working Group, and the Commonwealth AIDS Strategy Health Promotion subcommittee. Melissa is currently writing her doctoral thesis on Young People and Sexually Transmitted Infections.

Melissa has worked with colleagues over the past 20 years to develop and deliver curriculum and training to a range of students and health professionals, especially general practitioners. She has also written the medical column for Dolly magazine since 1993.

Associate Professor S Rachel Skinner (MBBS PhD FRACP) is an adolescent physician and clinical academic in the Discipline of Paediatrics and Child Health (DPCH), University of Sydney at the Children’s Hospital Westmead, and previously at University of Western Australia in Perth. She has research and academic titles with the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research, Perth, and the School of Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Western Australia.

She consults in adolescent gynaecology and sexual and reproductive health at the Children’s Hospital Westmead, Sydney. Previously she trained in paediatrics and adolescent medicine at the Royal Children’s Hospital, the Centre for Adolescent Health, in Melbourne, and the Mount Sinai Hospital Adolescent Health Center in New York. Her PhD from the University of Melbourne was entitled ‘Effective immunisation in adolescence’ and involved the evaluation of strategies to promote high uptake of hepatitis B vaccine in school-based vaccination programs.

Associate Professor Skinner’s research program broadly addresses the public health concerns relating to adolescent and young people’s sexual and reproductive health. Her studies are providing unique understandings into the early life, social, and contextual influences on teenage risky sexual behaviour, and why teenagers use contraception and condoms for pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STI) prevention. Her studies also explore the experiences and outcomes for teenagers who choose motherhood at an early age

Associate Professor Lena A Sanci (MBBS PhD FRACGP) is an academic general practitioner with research and clinical expertise in the primary health care of adolescents and young people. She leads a research stream in the General Practice and Primary Health Care Academic Centre, University of Melbourne, aiming to benefit the health and wellbeing of young people through primary health care systems, interventions, and workforce. She entered the general practice training program after graduation from medicine at the University of Melbourne in 1988. She became passionate about young people’s health after a special skills clinical post at the Centre for Adolescent Health, Royal Children’s Hospital, in Melbourne, where she then undertook research training and completed a PhD in 2000 on the design and evaluation of a training program for general practitioners in the principles of adolescent health care. That was the first randomised controlled trial to demonstrate the effectiveness of an educational intervention to improve the knowledge, attitudes, and skills of GPs in adolescent health. Currently she is completing a further randomised trial on screening young people presenting to general practice for health-risk, and on youth-friendly general practice systems. She is also exploring the use of technologies to improve both young people’s health and wellbeing and service providers’ capacity to work effectively with young people in the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre. Lena has taught clinical consultation skills in adolescent health to a wide range of established health and education professionals and those in training, and practices clinically in a drop-in health centre for young people.

Professor Susan M Sawyer (MBBS MD FRACP) is the Director of the Centre for Adolescent Health at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. A practising paediatrician, she holds the Chair in Adolescent Health at the University of Melbourne within the Department of Paediatrics.

Professor Sawyer’s academic interests have largely focused on health services research. She is particularly interested in improving the ‘adolescent friendliness’ of health services in primary care and specialist settings. She has authored over 200 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters and helped shape both the first (2007) and second (2012) series on adolescent health for the Lancet.

Recent clinical trials include randomised controlled trials of bariatric surgery for extremely obese adolescents, of a training intervention for Australian general practitioners to improve asthma outcomes in children and adolescents (PACE), and of a complex intervention (PARTY project) to improve the quality of primary care services for adolescents and young adults. Recent qualitative studies have sought to better understand the challenge of living with a chronic disease in adolescence, the role of peer support for young people with chronic illness, and the challenges for adolescents and parents of transferring to adult health care.

Professor Sawyer is an advisor to WHO and UNICEF, as well as to various governments and clinical programs locally and internationally. She chaired the scientific committee of the 9th World Congress on Adolescent Health and is a past president of the International Chapter of the (US) Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (2002), which honoured her with its International Chapter award in 2008, and fellowship of the society in 2009. She is vice-president (Oceania) of the International Association of Adolescent Health (2008-).

Professor Sawyer led the development of a training framework for adolescent health and medicine for Australian physicians after establishing the Joint Adolescent Health Committee of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians in 2003. She is a member of the inaugural Specialist Advisory Committee of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians which now supervises this training program. She was a founding member of the Victorian Centre for Excellence in Eating Disorders (2002-07) and has since contributed to multiple advisory Ministerial advisory committees in an effort to improve the quality of clinical services for young people with eating disorders. Current roles include Chairman of the Victorian Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Advisory Committee (2009-) and Chairman of Diabetes Australia’s ‘Diabetes and Youth’ working party (2010).

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