Dr Valerie Sung
Dr Valerie Sung is a consultant paediatrician and postdoctoral research fellow. She is director of the Caring for Hearing Impaired Children Clinic and co-director of the Unsettled Babies Clinic at The Royal Children's Hospital. Her career vision is to provide the best care to children with hearing loss as well as families of crying infants, while conducting clinical and population based research that can change and optimize practice. Her postdoctoral research program on congenital hearing loss aims to identify early predictors of child outcomes to improve early prognostic counselling, establish evidence-based management through interventional trials, and ultimately discover ways to prevent or reduce progression of hearing loss.
For her PhD, Dr Sung conducted the world's largest randomised trial of a probiotic in treating infant colic, published in the BMJ, for which she received a Dean's Award for Excellence in a PhD Thesis from the University of Melbourne. She subsequently led an international collaboration that pooled data from international trials to determine the probiotic's effectiveness in colic. Dr Sung recently founded the Childhood Hearing Australasian Medical Professionals (CHAMP) Network which aims to develop national guidelines for managing childhood hearing loss and facilitate research collaborations. She is a committee member of the Australian Newborn Hearing Screening Committee, and member of the Australasian Paediatric Research Network Steering Committee.
· Doctor of Philosophy PhD (2015) The University of Melbourne
· Master of Public Health (2011) with distinction, Monash University
· FRACP (2008) Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, General Paediatrics
· MBBS honours (2000) Bachelor of Medicine / Bachelor of Surgery with honours, The University of Melbourne
· Associate of the Trinity College of London (ATCL 1994) Performer's Diploma In Pianoforte
· Paediatrician, Centre for Community Child Health and Department of General Medicine, The Royal Children's Hospital
· Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Community Health Services Research, Murdoch Children's Research Institute
· Senior lecturer and honorary fellow, Department of Paediatrics, The University of Melbourne
· 2017: National Health and Medical Research Council Early Career Fellowship ($265,137.60 over 4 years): 'Improving treatment and outcomes of congenital hearing loss at the population level'
· 2017: Cottrell Research Establishment Fellowship ($75,000), the Royal Australasian College of Physicians Foundation: 'Improving treatment and outcomes of congenital hearing loss at the population level'
· 2017: The Jeffrey Mahemoff Travel Scholarship, Centre for Community Child Health, Royal Children's Hospital
· 2016: Melbourne Children's Clinician-Scientist Fellowship ($70,371.84)
· 2016: The Dean's Award for Excellence in a PhD Thesis, University of Melbourne
· 2014: University of Melbourne Melbourne Abroad Travelling Scholarship
· 2013: The Society for Pediatric Research Student Research Award, Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting, Washington, USA
· 2013: Murdoch Children's Research Institute Student Conference Support
· 2013: Student Symposium Prize, Research Students Association, Murdoch Children's Research Institute
· 2013: 3 rd prize – “Three minute publication", Population Health Theme, Murdoch Children's Research Institute
· 2013: 2 nd prize – Three Minute Thesis Heats, University of Melbourne Department of Paediatrics
· 2010: National Health and Medical Research Council Postgraduate Scholarship ($107,750 over 3 years): “Impact of L. reuteri on infant crying and parent mental health: randomised controlled trial in infants with colic"
· 2010: Australian Postgraduate Scholarship, University of Melbourne 2010
· 2010: Murdoch Children's Research Institute Postgraduate Health Research Scholarship
· 2010: Best Poster Prize in Paediatrics and Child Health Division, The World Congress in Internal Medicine, Melbourne
· 2009: The Uncle Bob's & Jeannie H Poolman Scholarship, Royal Children's Hospital Travelling Scholarship: “Does sleep duration predict metabolic risk in obese adolescents?", Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.
Dr Sung's research includes randomised controlled trials to establish intervention efficacy and population-based research around natural history, cost and burden. Her PhD focussed on the role of probiotics in treating infant colic. Her post-doctoral research focuses on optimizing outcomes of congenital hearing loss, as well as health services research around infant colic.
· VicCHILD: Victorian Childhood Hearing Impairment Longitudinal Databank
· Pilot targeted congenital CMV screening in Victoria – in collaborations with Royal Women's Hospital, Mercy Hospital for Women and Monash Medical Centre
· Mild Matters: qualitative study on mild congenital hearing loss – in collaborations with National Acoustic Laboratories and Australian Hearing – leads on to plans for a randomised controlled trial to determine the effectiveness of early amplification for mild congenital hearing loss.
· Let's Nudge pilot RCT: home-based nudge interventions for childhood obesity
· Caring for Crying Babies: parental perspectives on infant colic management
· Allergy in the Community Trial: new model of community paediatrician management of simple food allergy
· Childhood Hearing Australasian Medical Professionals (CHAMP) Network: national network of paediatricians, geneticists and ENT surgeons for research and clinical guideline collaboration.
· Baby Biotics: randomised controlled trial of L reuteri to treat infant colic
· Baby Biotics follow-up study: outcomes of infant colic
· Individual participant meta-analysis of probiotics for management of infant colic: international collaboration of 8 institutions in the US, Italy, France, Poland, Finland and Australia
· Caring for Crying Babies: emergency physician perspectives on managing infant colic
· Caring for Crying Babies: maternal child health nurse perspectives on managing infant colic
· Sung V, D’Amico F, Cabana MD, Chau K, Koren, G, Savino F, Szajewska H, Deshpande G, Dupont C, Indrio F, Mentula S, Partty A, Tancredi D. Lactobacillus reuteri to treat infant colic: A meta-analysis (accepted for publication into Pediatrics August 2017)
· Sung V, Cabana MD. Probiotics for colic – could the gut be responsible for infant crying afterall? (invited editorial accepted for publication into Journal of Pediatrics August 2017)
· Downie L, Halliday J, Burt R, Lunke S, Lynch E, Martyn M, Poulakis Z, Gaff C, Sung V, Wake M, Hunter M, Saunders K, Rose E, Rehm HL, Amor D. A protocol for whole exome sequencing in newborns with congenital deafness – a prospective population based cohort (accepted for publication into BMJ Paediatrics Open July 2017)
· Sung V, Partty A. The association between intestinal microbiota and infant crying and behaviour. In: Microbiota in health and disease: from pregnancy to childhood , Wageningen Academic Publishers, 2017 (editors Browne PD, Claassen E, Cabana MD) p219-43 [ISBN 978-90-8686-294-8]
· Sung V , St James-Roberts I. Infant colic. In Pediatric Neurogastroenterology: Gastrointestinal Motility and Functional Disorders in Children, Second Edition, Springer International Publishing, 2017 (editors Faure C, Thapar N, Di Lorenzo C) p369-79 [ISBN 978-3-319-43268-7]
· Sung V. Do probiotics really work for crying babies? The Digest 2015; 3(5):14
· Sung V. Probiotic interventions in infantile colic. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care 2015; 18:307-311. Doi:10.1097/MCO.0000000000000157
· Sung V, Cabana MD, D’Amico F, Deshpande G, Dupont C, Indrio F, Mentula S, Partty A, Savino F, Szajewska H, Tancredi D. Lactobacillus reuteri DSM 17938 for managing infant colic - protocol for an individual participant data meta-analysis. BMJ Open 2014;4:e006475. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006475
· Sung V, Hiscock H, Tang MLK, Mensah FK, Nation ML, Satzke C, Heine RG, Stock A, Barr RG, Wake M. Treating infant colic with the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri: a randomised double-blind placebo-controlled trial. BMJ 2014;348:g2107
· Sung V, Collett S, de Gooyer T, Tang M, Hiscock H, Wake M. Probiotics to prevent or treat excessive infant crying: systematic review and meta-analysis . JAMA Pediatrics 167(12): 1150-1157. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.2572
· Sung V, Beebe DW, VanDyke R, Fenchel MC, Crimmins NA, Kirk S, Hiscock H, Amin R, Wake M. Does sleep duration predict metabolic risk in obese adolescents attending tertiary services? A cross-sectional study. Sleep 2011;34(7):891-898
· Sung V, Hiscock H, Sciberras E, Efron D. Sleep problems in children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Prevalence and the effect on the child and family. Archives of Pediatric Adolescent Medicine 2008;162(4):336-42