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Adolescent Medicine

Overview A time of life characterized by profound physical, mental and emotional development, adolescence poses unique challenges to health care providers. At Stony Brook Children's, we recognize these challenges and strive to address them. Serving more than 2,000 patients each year, our Division of Adolescent Medicine is the only hospital-based adolescent medicine program in Suffolk County.

Our mission is to help patients ages 12 to 24 avoid high-risk behaviors, seek wellness and develop habits that encourage a lifetime of health. To achieve these goals, we take a multifaceted approach: providing a broad range of clinical and consultation services; working collaboratively with other Stony Brook pediatric divisions and centers; engaging in vital adolescent medicine research; and teaching tomorrow's physicians about the health needs of adolescents through the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University.

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Stony Brook Children's Services
37 Research Way
East Setauket, NY 11733-3489
(631) 444-KIDS

Stony Brook Children's Services at Hampton Bays
225 West Montauk Highway
Hampton Bays, NY 11946
(631) 444-KIDS

Stony Brook Children's Services at Islip
2701 Sunrise Highway,
Islip Terrace, NY 11752-2612
(631) 444-KIDS

Stony Brook Children's Services at Patchogue
450 Waverly Avenue
Patchogue, NY 11772
(631) 444-KIDS

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Our Team
Allison Eliscu, MD
Alexis Santiago, MD
Zachary Jacobs, DO
Amy Canterella, MS, RDN, CDN
Kathryn Fassnacht, NP

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Services The Adolescent Medicine Division provides inpatient consultations, outpatient consultations and primary care for patients ages 12 through 24. Almost 60 percent of our outpatient program consists of consultations on psychosocial issues. We screen for high-risk behaviors common among teenagers, provide education and make referrals to appropriate services and programs. 

We also offer primary care and specialized services designed to address some of the major health issues of adolescence. Services include:

  • Comprehensive medical care for adolescents including school physicals and immunization
  • Comprehensive sexual education and related medical care for teens with developmental delays
  • Evaluation and treatment of menstrual and gynecological disorders
  • Female and male confidential family planning services
  • Medical care for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender teens
  • Pregnancy testing and pregnancy prevention education
  • Puberty and growth concerns
  • Screening and medical care for patients with eating disorders from anorexia to obesity
  • Screening and treatment for mental health issues such as ADHD, ADD, anxiety, depression and self-injurious behaviors
  • Sexually transmitted infection and HIV screening and treatment
  • Substance abuse screening

In December 2010, the Adolescent Medicine Division was awarded a New York State Department of Health grant for a comprehensive adolescent pregnancy prevention program. This will allow the Division to educate students, parents, and school officials on not only pregnancy prevention, but also sexually transmitted infections and HIV.

In addition, in conjunction with the School of Social Welfare, Adolescent Medicine provides mental health counseling services for teens at highest risk. We also have a base of health providers in the community whom we work with to refer patients for care such as mental health, nutrition and other services.

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Patient Resources Free HIV Testing. Using the resources of a grant from New York State, Stony Brook's Division of Adolescent Medicine can arrange free, rapid HIV testing throughout Suffolk County. A program coordinator fields phone calls from community pediatricians and other doctors who have patients they want tested. The time and place for testing is flexible, and often can be done on the same day. For more information, call (631) 444-2501.

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Research and Education Research and teaching are important elements of Stony Brook's adolescent medicine program. Allison Eliscu, MD, is an assistant professor on the faculty of the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University.

Dr. Eliscu's research interests include adolescent gynecology and female sexual health.

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Advances and Recognitions

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Definitions ADD - Attention deficit disorder symptoms may include inattention, impulsivity, overactivity, social clumsiness, disorganization and specific learning disabilities.

ADHD - Attention deficit with hyperactivity disorder may be characterized by difficulty with the following: paying attention, concentrating, following directions, learning, keeping still, and completing tasks. Teens with ADHD may be inclined to make impulsive decisions without stopping to think about the consequences of their choices. Three subtypes of ADHD exist: inattentive, hyperactive-impulsive, and combined.

Anxiety - Symptoms of anxiety disorders may include excessive worry and apprehension; irritability; fatigue; difficulty concentrating; or sleep disturbances. Panic disorder may involve unpredictable episodes of heart palpitations or chest pain; excessive sweating; light-headedness; labored breathing; tingling in the arms or legs; a sense of disassociation; and fear of losing control.

Depression - In teens, depression may involve a combination of symptoms: depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in previously enjoyed activities; sadness and fear with intermittent inability to feel emotion; marked weight loss or gain; changes in sleep patterns; restlessness; fatigue; hopelessness; decreased self esteem; abuse of alcohol, drugs or food; nightmares; problems in ; self injury; or becoming withdrawn or irritable.

High-risk behaviors - These harmful behaviors can result in injury, disease, and death. Examples of high-risk behaviors include unprotected sexual activity (oral, anal or vaginal) without a condom; sharing needles while injecting drugs; using street drugs or abusing prescription drugs; huffing inhalants; using alcohol; drinking and driving; tobacco use; and engaging in violent behavior.

Self-injurious behaviors - This refers to purposeful harming one's own body whether by cutting, hitting, burning, head banging, choking, scratching, inserting objects into body opening, or other self-destructive behaviors.

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