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Howard G. Smith, M.D. is a former radio medical editor and talk show host in the Boston Metro area.  His "Medical Minute" of health and wellness news and commentary was a regular weekday feature on WBZ-AM, WRKO-AM, and WMRE-AM.   His popular two-way talk show, Dr. Howard Smith OnCall, was regularly heard Sunday morning and middays on WBZ.

More recently, Dr. Smith has adopted the 21st century technology of audio and video podcasting as conduits for the short health and wellness reports, HEALTH NEWS YOU SHOULD USE.  Many of these have video versions, and they may be found on his YouTube page:

Trained at Harvard Medical School and a long-time faculty member at Boston Children’s Hospital, he practiced Pediatric Otolaryngology for 40 years in Boston, Southern California, and in central Connecticut.

If you have questions or suggestions about this content, please email the doctor at or leave him a message at 516-778-8864.  His website is:

Please note that the news, views, commentary, and opinions that Dr. Smith provides are for informational purposes only.  Any changes that you or members of your family contemplate making to lifestyle, diet, medications, or medical therapy should always be discussed beforehand with personal physicians who have been supervising your care.

Mar 15, 2019


Children of mothers who suffered a serious infection during pregnancy have a higher risk of autism and depression.  This is the result of a study looking at some 1.8 million Swedish children that was just published in JAMA Psychiatry.

For those mothers who required inpatient therapy for infection during their pregnancies,  their children had a 79% higher risk of autism and a 24% higher risk of depression.  There was no higher risk of other psychiatric problems including bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.

This study only demonstrates an association without explaining why it happens.  It is a powerful reminder that women and their partners during the childbearing years should be fully vaccinated against all infections.  It is ironic that anti-vaxxer pregnant women may be giving birth to children at higher risk for autism.

#Maternalinfection #vaccination #autism #depression

Benjamin J. S. al-Haddad, Bo Jacobsson, Shilpi Chabra, Dominika Modzelewska, Erin M. Olson, Raphael Bernier, Daniel A. Enquobahrie, Henrik Hagberg, Svante Östling, Lakshmi Rajagopal, Kristina M. Adams Waldorf, Verena Sengpiel. Long-term Risk of Neuropsychiatric Disease After Exposure to Infection In Utero. JAMA Psychiatry, 2019; DOI: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2019.0029