Areas of expertise
Health of internationally and domestically adopted children;
Adjunct professor Helena Lapinleimu MD, PhD graduated from the Medical School at the University of Tampere in 1987. She specialized at the University of Turku in Pediatrics in 1997 and in Neonatology in 2000. She defended her thesis in 1997 from the STRIP Study on Influence of individualized dietary counselling and apolipoprotein E polymorphism on serum lipoproteins in infancy. After her own thesis, she has collaborated with the STRIP study by supervising two theses, with the neurological follow-up study, NAMU by supervising one thesis and the long-term follow-up study of preterm infants, the PIPARI study, by supervising two theses. Since 2004 she has had a position as the adjunct professor of Neonatology at the University of Turku. Since 2007 she has led an active research group, FinAdo (Finnish Adoption) Study, in Turku, Finland.
Since 2001, she has been a member of the Ethics review Committee of the Hospital Distirct of Southwest Finland. She has been a medical adviser for four organizations of international Adoptions in Finland.
Since 2013, Helena Lapinleimu has worked as a half-time clinical teacher in Pediatrics and Neonatology at the Department of Pediatrics, University of Turku. Since 2007, she has given over 100 invited lectures of internationally and domestically adopted children for general public, and in domestic and international academic meetings.
Research: She has published 120 original scientific publications and 15 reviews, chapters in text books or other publications. She has concentrated in her research work on two strategies: 1) To develop clinical practices with scientific studies at Follow-up clinic of preterm infants in the University Hospital of Turku 2) Scientific research of internationally adopted children and other risk groups of children with compromised development. Many internationally adopted children have been maltreated and have lived with inadequate care in orphanages and are often stressed when they arrive to families. Most of them manage later fine, but some of them have overwhelming problems. The FinAdo study of international adoptees comprises of three different parts: the questionnaire study with 2000 participated children aimed to find out what kind of physical or mental health problems adoptees in Finland have. This study will be repeated in year 2019. Next, a longitudinal follow-up study with 150 internationally adopted children aims to find markers of physical stress that would identify the children, with neurocognitive development problems at the school age and later. The third FinAdo-study is a register study including internationally and domestically adopted children with their parents and a comparison group of main population.