Myriam Bickle Graz

Myriam Bickle Graz

Dr Myriam Bickle Graz is a developmental pediatrician affiliated to a large tertiary care neonatal center, which is the reference center for the 15000 neonates born in each year in the region. After training in general pediatrics in Lausanne, Switzerland, she worked in the neonatal neurology department of Hammersmith Hospital in London, UK, and came back to head the Follow-Up Unit of the Neonatology department in the University Hospital in Lausanne. She has a special interest in the medical, environmental and psychosocial determinants of child development. These last 10 years, she has initiated or participated in clinical research projects covering different aspects in this field, such as the neurodevelopment of preterm infants, including the impact of fetal size, pain, brain development, psychosocial determinants of infant development, with research on maternal mental health, and medical determinants of child development. Current multidisciplinary research looks at child development after exposure to antidepressants during pregnancy, or at child development when mothers suffer from childbirth-related post traumatic stress disorder for example.

Among factors known to have an impact on child development, especially for hospitalized neonates, environmental agents, among them phthalates, are under-recognized and understudied. In the neonatal clinic, Dr Bickle Graz participates in the effort to study, report on and raise awareness on this issue, with several publications on the presence of phthalates in neonatal intensive care units, a review on phthalates and child development, and last a survey on the knowledge and awareness on neonatologist on this subject, to be published. As a member of “Doctors for the environment”, a Swiss association , Dr Bickle Graz believes  that professionals need to be committed to limiting the impact of environmental pollutants on future generations.