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Pediatric Neurosurgery

From consultations with parents-to-be, to follow-up appointments with young adult patients, our pediatric neurosurgery specialists offer the most advanced medical care available, along with compassionate understanding and support for patients with pediatric neurosurgical conditions.

Our reputation for surgical excellence combined with our understanding of the special needs of children and families who live with neurological diseases rank us among the finest Pediatric Neurosurgery sections in the country. In addition, the Yale New Haven Children's Hospital is the only hospital in the state to have a dedicated Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), providing the highest level of care to children with neurological conditions.

Our Services

We provide comprehensive services to infants, toddlers, school-age children, adolescents, and young adults for common problems including:

  • Hydrocephalus
  • Brain and spinal cord tumors
  • Spina bifida
  • Craniofacial disorders (i.e., craniosynostosis)
  • Brain or spine trauma

Our pediatric neurosurgeons work closely with each other, as well as with an interdisciplinary team that includes orthopaedists, urologists, neurologists, radiation oncologists, neuropathologists, adult neurosurgeons, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and social workers. Our full-time pediatric advanced practice nurse participates in all aspects of the child’s care and carefully coordinates evaluation and treatment appointments to make the process as convenient and timely as possible. Our operating facilities are designed for children, and our nursing units are arranged by age.

Our Approach

Often, a family’s first contact with us takes place when they learn their unborn baby has a congenital abnormality of the central nervous system such as hydrocephalus or spina bifida. We provide counseling for these parents to help them understand how these conditions might affect the lives of children and their family members.

Yale pediatric neurosurgeons were pioneers in the use of endoscopes (tiny fiber optic cameras) to treat hydrocephalus surgically, making it possible to bypass the obstruction and restore normal fluid flow. The procedure, called endoscopic third ventriculostomy, is a safe and effective treatment option. Our pediatric neurosurgeons also team with plastic surgeons to treat craniosynostosis, which affects the shape of the head. We re-contour the bones of the skull and re-secure them in such a way that symmetrical growth can occur.

For brain tumors, we offer such specialized treatments as stereotactic radiosurgery (Gamma Knife surgery). We also offer electrocorticography and cortical mapping. These are techniques to identify areas of the brain that are critical to movement, feeling, memory, and speech so surgeons can remove as much of the tumor as possible without disturbing critical areas of the brain.