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Division Head, Pediatric Psychology
Clinical Director, Obesity Center
PhD, Texas Tech University
The Medical College of Georgia/Augusta VA Psychology Residency Consortium
The Medical College of Georgia, Hartford Hospital/The Institute of Living
Associate Professor of Pediatrics, University of Connecticut School of Medicine
Dr. Santos is a psychologist specializing in the family treatment of pediatric obesity. She works with adolescents and their families preparing for bariatric surgery and families participating in non-surgical weight management programming. Dr. Santos supervises psychology and medical students in clinical and research activities within the obesity program. In addition to her work at Connecticut Children’s, Dr. Santos serves as the President of the Society of Pediatric Psychology.
Santos, M., Cadieux, A., Gray, J. & Ward, W. (2016). Pediatric Obesity in Early Childhood: A Physician Screening Tool. Clinical Pediatrics, 55, 356-362.
Cadieux, A., Getzoff, E., Baughcum, A., Shaffer, L., Santos, M., Gaffka, B., Gray, J., Burton, E. & Ward, W. (2016). Recommendations for Psychologists in Stage III Pediatric Obesity Programs. Children’s Health Care, 45, 126-145.
Gray, J.S., Cadieux, A., Sweeney, B., Beck, A., Edgar, S., Eneli, I., Getzoff Testa, E., Paguio, K., Santos, M., & Ward, W. (in press). Medical neglect and pediatric obesity: Insights from tertiary care obesity treatment programs. Children’s Health Care.
Astur, R.S., Carew, A.W., Palmisano, A., Deaton, B.E., Kuhney, F., Niezrecki, R., & Santos, M. (2016). Cravings in a Virtual Reality Room Paired with Chocolate Predict Eating Disorder Risk. International Journal of Child Health and Human Development, 9, 9-19.
Santos, M., Murtaugh, T., Pantaleao, A. Zempsky, W. & Guite, J. (In Press) Chronic Pain and Obesity within a Pediatric Interdisciplinary Pain Clinic Setting: A Preliminary Examination of Current Relationships and Future Directions. Clinical Journal of Pain.
Patinkin, Z., Feinn, R. & Santos, M. (In Press)Metabolic Consequences of Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Adolescents with Obesity: A Systematic Literature Review and Meta-Analysis. Childhood Obesity
Mulchan, S. S., Signore, A., Reiss, M., Olezeski, C. L., & Santos, M. (2021). Motivational interviewing to navigate ethical considerations for youth facing stigma in health care settings. Journal of Health Service Psychology, 47(3), 129-136.
Mulchan, S.S., Wakefield, E., Santos, M. (2020). What COVID-19 teaches us about implicit bias in pediatric health care. Journal of pediatric psychology, jsaa131. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1093/jpepsy/jsaa131
Mackey ER, Burton ET, Cadieux A, Getzoff E, Santos M, Ward W, Beck AR. Addressing Structural Racism Is Critical for Ameliorating the Childhood Obesity Epidemic in Black Youth. Child Obes. 2021 Sep 2. doi: 10.1089/chi.2021.0153. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34491828.
Skinner AC, Xu H, Christison A, Neshteruk C, Cuda S, Santos M, Yee JK, Thomas L, King E, Kirk S; POWER Work Group. Patient Retention in Pediatric Weight Management Programs in the United States: Analyses of Data from the Pediatrics Obesity Weight Evaluation Registry. Child Obes. 2021 Aug 20. doi: 10.1089/chi.2021.0092. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34415779.
A recent study from the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) revealed a possible link between social media and brain changes in young adolescents. MRI brain scans showed that teens who frequently check social media had increased activation in certain parts of their brain, which could lead to changes in impulse control and regulation. […]
Posted In: Behavioral Health, Media Use/Screen Time
Winter darkness and colder weather can cause your child’s mood and health habits to take a dive. To help, start with the basics! Connecticut Children’s pediatric psychologist Melissa Santos, PhD, shares her top five tips. Want more articles like this from pediatric experts you trust? Sign up for our newsletter. Subscribe 1. Eat right. […]
Posted In: Behavioral Health, Behavioral Health Kit, Coronavirus, Mental Health, Winter Kit
In recent years, many diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI for simplicity) topics around social justice, racism and more have bubbled to the surface. To be fair, many of us adults are still educating ourselves on what we should know, and why it matters. But what information do you need to talk to your kids? Here […]
Posted In: Diversity + Equity + Inclusion