John F. McLaughlin, MD

John F. McLaughlin, MD

Developmental Pediatrics

On staff since May 1977

Academic Title: Professor Emeritus, University of Washington

"Children and families inspire me. Teams of dedicated colleagues across many disciplines support me. Inquisitive students and trainees keep me honest. Opportunities for new understanding and improved care challenge me. It is a privilege to practice evidence-based medicine in the context of relationships based on trust and mutual respect."

  • I come from two long lines of Midwesterners who valued honesty,hard work, education and love of family. Growing up in the Northeast, my social and cultural horizons were substantially expanded. I was educated in a small public high school, Yale University and Northwestern University Medical School. My wife and I fell in love with the Pacific Northwest when I came to Seattle to be an intern. After serving as a pediatrician in the Air Force, we happily came back and raised our children here. Seattle Children's Hospital and the University of Washington have been great places for a career. My consistent focus has been to roll back the blanket of scientific and societal ignorance that has kept many children with congenital anomalies and developmental disabilities from achieving their optimal place in the world. It is a privilege to be a small part of the lives of so many wonderful kids and families.

    • Jean Lynden, Wa. 06.10.18

      My son Jared Jones was born with Vater Syndrome at birth April 8 1984 and flown to Children's in Seattle. Dr. John Mcglaughlin was Jareds pediatrician up until he was no longer able to go to childrens. He recently passed away March 16, 2018 but I wanted to thank him for being Jareds pediatrician while at children's. He recently 2 yrs ago helped us to try and give us advice in finding a surgeon for surgeries he needed since we weren't having any luck. He's one of the most caring doctors I've met

  • Award Name Award Description Awarded By Award Date
    Lifetime Achievement Award American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine Oct. 13, 2013
    Top Doctors Seattle Metropolitan Magazine 2011 - 2012
    Certificate of Appreciation Combatting Autism Advisory Council, State of Washington 2011
    Mentorship Award American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine 2010
  • Manuscripts in Refereed Journals

    • Delgado MR, Hirtz D, Aisen M, Ashwal S, Fehlings DL, McLaughlin JF, Morrison LA, Shrader W, Tilton A, and Vargus-Adams J
      Practice Parameter: Pharmacological Treatment of Spasticity in Children and Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy (an evidence-based revoew). Report of the Quality standards Subcommittee of the american Academy of Neurology and the Practice Committee of the Child Neurology Society.
      Neurology, 2010 : 74336-343
    • Bjornson KF, Belza B, Kartin D, Logsdone R, McLaughlin JF and Thompson EA.
      The relationship of activity capacity and performance to self-reported health status and quality of life in youth with cerebral palsy.
      Pediatric Physical Therapy, 2008 : 20247-253
    • Cardenas DD, Topolski TD, White CJ, McLaughlin JF, Walker WO
      Sexual functioning in adolescents and young adults with spina bifida.
      18164327 Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 2008 Jan. : 31-5
    • Bjornson K, Hays R, Graubert C, Price R, Won F, McLaughlin JF, Cohen M
      Botulinum toxin for spasticity in children with cerebral palsy: a comprehensive evaluation.
      17606561 Pediatrics, 2007 July : 49-58
    • Bjornson KF, Belza B, Kartin D, Logsdon R, McLaughlin JF
      Ambulatory physical activity performance in youth with cerebral palsy and youth who are developing typically.
      17244693 Physical Therapy, 2007 March : 248-57
    • Krach LE, Kriel RL, Gilmartin RC, Swift DM, Storrs BB, Abbott R, Ward JD, Bloom KK, Brooks WH, Madsen JR, McLaughlin JF, Nadell JM
      GMFM 1 year after continuous intrathecal baclofen infusion.
      16087555 Pediatric rehabilitation, 2005 July : 207-13
    • McLaughlin JF, Felix SD, Nowbar S, Ferrel A, Bjornson K, Hays RM
      Lower extremity sensory function in children with cerebral palsy.
      15799135 Pediatric rehabilitation, 2005 Jan. : 45-52
    • Krach LE, Kriel RL, Gilmartin RC, Swift DM, Storrs BB, Abbott R, Ward JD, Bloom KK, Brooks WH, Madsen JR, McLaughlin JF, Nadell JM
      Hip status in cerebral palsy after one year of continuous intrathecal baclofen infusion.
      15033197 Pediatric neurology, 2004 March : 163-8
    • Bjornson KF, McLaughlin JF, Loeser JD, Nowak-Cooperman KM, Russel M, Bader KA, Desmond SA
      Oral motor, communication, and nutritional status of children during intrathecal baclofen therapy: a descriptive pilot study.
      12690587 Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 2003 April : 500-6
    • Albright AL, Gilmartin R, Swift D, Krach LE, Ivanhoe CB, McLaughlin JF
      Long-term intrathecal baclofen therapy for severe spasticity of cerebral origin.
      12593613 Journal of neurosurgery, 2003 Feb. : 291-5
    • Campbell WM, Ferrel A, McLaughlin JF, Grant GA, Loeser JD, Graubert C, Bjornson K
      Long-term safety and efficacy of continuous intrathecal baclofen.
      12418790 Developmental medicine and child neurology, 2002 Oct. : 660-5
    • Abel MF, Damiano DL, McLaughlin JF, Song KM, Graubert CS, Bjornson KF
      Comparison of functional outcomes from orthopedic and neurosurgical interventions in spastic diplegia.
      17206773 Neurosurgical focus, 1998 Jan. : e2

    Manuscripts Submitted

    • He Y, Brunstrom-Hernandez JE, Thio LL, Lackey S, Gaebler-Spira D, Stashinko E, Vargus-Adams J, McLaughlin JF,, Christensen A, Krach L, Tilton A, Jusko WJ.
      Population pharacokinetic analyis of oral baclofen in pediatric patients with cerebral palsy.

    Other Publications

    • He Y, Brunstrom-Hernandez JE, Thio LL, Lackey S, Gaebler-Spira D, Kuroda MM, Stashinko E, Hoon AH Jr, Vargus-Adams J, Stevenson RD, Lowenhaupt S, McLaughlin JF, Christensen A, Dosa NP, Butler M, Schwabe A, Lopez C, Roge D, Kennedy D, Tilton A, Krach LE, Lewandowski A, Dai H, Gaedigk A, Leeder JS, Jusko WJ
      Population pharmacokinetics of oral baclofen in pediatric patients with cerebral palsy.
      24607242 The Journal of pediatrics, 2014 May : 164(5)1181-1188.e8 PMCID:PMC3992203

  • Grant Title Grantor Amount Award Date
    Pediatric Hemiplegia: Synergistic Treatment Using Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation and Constraint Induced Therapy Institutes of Health, ARRA Challenge Grant $421,919.00 Sept. 1, 2009
    Baclofen for Spasticity Trial National Institutes of Health $575,000.00 July 1, 2006
    Infusion System Performance Registry Medtronic, Inc. $5,000.00 March 1, 2006
    Improving Measurement of Pain and Fatigue in Children and Adults with disabilities National Institute of Health $787,501.00 Sept. 1, 2004
    The Effect of Dynamic Ankle-Foot Orthotics (DAFO) in Children with Cerebral Palsy Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center 1998 Research Endowment Support $13,460.00 Dec. 1, 1998
    Botulinum Toxin for Spasticity in Cerebral Palsy National Institutes of Health $490,163.00 July 1, 1997


Board Certification(s)

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics

Medical/Professional School

Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago

Clinical Interests

Cerebral palsy, spina bifida, developmental disabilities, spasticity/dystonia, interdisciplinary training

Research Description

I am pursuing a research agenda aimed at improving the lives of children and youth with developmental disabilities, especially the management of spasticity and other movement disorders in cerebral palsy. The paradigm is based on the International Classification of Function (ICF) developed by the World Health Organization. The ICF uses an interactive model of human function that takes into account the impact of genetics, neurophysiology, environment, social and personal factors on the ability of individuals to function in age-appropriate roles in human society.

I have a registry of patients who have undergone treatments for spasticity, and participate in an industry-sponsored registry to track the effectiveness of implantable medical devices. I am site PI on a NIH-funded contract to establish whether or not oral baclofen is an effective treatment for spasticity in children with cerebral palsy. I am interested in collaborating with other investigators in this and related areas. Our research team has had two previous NIH RO-1s and other foundation and industry supported grants.

Research Focus Area

Chronic Conditions / Special Health Care Needs, Neuroscience / Neurodevelopment