Pediatrics was the specialty I enjoyed most in medical school. It is a field that combines prevention and treatment. Rather than focusing strictly on illness, I prefer to concentrate on wellness in a broader sense. Wellness includes physical health, but is also influenced by family interactions, cognitive development and emotional and behavioral well-being. My work with patients is distinguished by an evidence-based practice, which avoids treating colds and other viral illnesses with antibiotics. I also assess family and other environmental factors that influence a child's health. Providing children with a safe and nurturing environment is important to their health. Good health necessitates avoiding health-impairing behaviors, including smoking, dietary excess, and sedentary lifestyle. In addition, children's attitudes toward school and their academic success contribute to their ultimate adult health and well-being. In my proactive approach, I focus on early literacy, school readiness and school performance. A good diet, a healthy weight, daily exercise, restful sleep, and positive relationships all combine to help children reach their potential.
Dr. Byrd's clinical expertise includes delivery of pediatric primary care, including for children with medical complexity. For over 20 years at UC Davis, Dr. Byrd has taught pediatric residents how to provide primary care and how to care for infants in the newborn nursery. In addition, Dr. Byrd is the pediatrician for the UC Davis Cleft and Craniofacial Team. Dr. Byrd has volunteered for the Painted Turtle Camp for over 10 years.
Dr. Byrd's research focuses on behavioral epidemiology, with an emphasis on the interface of pediatrics and education. Because much of adult health is tied to educational attainment, how can pediatricians help promote health and wellness through promotion of early literacy and prevention of school failure?
B.S., Chemical Engineering, Summa Cum Laude, UC Davis, Davis CA 1980
M.D., Bowman Gray School of Medicine, Winston-Salem NC 1984
M.P.H., University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester NY 1994
Pediatrics, North Carolina Baptist Hospital, Winston-Salem NC 1985-1987
General Academic Pediatrics, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester NY 1991-1994
American Board of Pediatrics, 1988
American Academy of Pediatrics - Fellow Ambulatory Pediatric Association - Member, Early Literacy SIG, Newborn Nursery SIG,
Kim CH, Gee KA, Byrd RS. Excessive Absenteeism Due to Asthma in California Elementary Schoolchildren. Acad Pediatr. 2020 Sep-Oct;20(7):950-957. doi:10.1016/j.acap.2019.12.003. Epub 2019 Dec 16. PMID:31837461.
Shaikh U, Byrd RS. Population Health Considerations for Pediatric Asthma: Findings from the 2011-2012 California Health Interview Survey. Popul Health Manag. 2016 Apr;19(2):145-51. doi:10.1089/pop.2015.0015. Epub 2015 Jun 23. PMID:26103063.
Bremer AA, Byrd RS, Auinger P. Racial trends in sugar-sweetened beverage consumption among US adolescents: 1988-2004. Int J Adolesc Med Health. 2011;23(3):279-86. doi:10.1515/ijamh.2011.056. PMID:22191196.
Byrd RS, Zwerdling T, Moghaddam B, Pinter JD, Steinfeld MB. Monosomy 21q22.11-q22.13 presenting as a Fanconi anemia phenotype. Am J Med Genet A. 2011 Jan;155A(1):120-5. doi:10.1002/ajmg.a.33801. PMID:21204218.
Bremer AA, Auinger P, Byrd RS. Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Intake Trends in US Adolescents and Their Association with Insulin Resistance-Related Parameters. J Nutr Metab. 2010;2010:196476. doi:10.1155/2010/196476. Epub 2009 Sep 6. PMID:20700405.
Ozonoff S, Heung K, Byrd R, Hansen R, Hertz-Picciotto I. The onset of autism: patterns of symptom emergence in the first years of life. Autism Res. 2008 Dec;1(6):320-8. doi:10.1002/aur.53. PMID:19360687.
Weitzman M, Byrd RS, Aligne CA, Moss M. The effects of tobacco exposure on children's behavioral and cognitive functioning: implications for clinical and public health policy and future research. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2002 May-Jun;24(3):397-406. doi:10.1016/s0892-0362(02)00201-5. PMID:12009494.
Garfunkel LC, Byrd RS, McConnochie KM, Auinger P. Resident and family continuity in pediatric continuity clinic: nine years of observation. Pediatrics. 1998 Jan;101(1 Pt 1):37-42. doi:10.1542/peds.101.1.37. PMID:9417148.
Lanphear BP, Byrd RS, Auinger P, Schaffer SJ. Community characteristics associated with elevated blood lead levels in children. Pediatrics. 1998 Feb;101(2):264-71. doi:10.1542/peds.101.2.264. PMID:9445502.
Byrd RS, Weitzman M, Auinger P. Increased behavior problems associated with delayed school entry and delayed school progress. Pediatrics. 1997 Oct;100(4):654-61. doi:10.1542/peds.100.4.654. PMID:9310520.