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Neurocritical Care

Contact number | 202-476-2120

Pediatric neurocritical care is the area of medicine focused on protecting and treating the brains of critically ill and injured children. At Children’s National, our experts provide comprehensive neurocritical care for infants through young adults.

We understand that families who are in our care often feel distressed and uncertain. We are dedicated to providing compassionate and expert care for your child and entire family. Our goal is to achieve the best outcomes possible, in the most supportive manner, for our patients and their families.

State-of-the-Art Critical Care Around the Clock

The Neurocritical Care Unit at Children’s National Hospital, also known as the Neuro ICU, is the only pediatric neuro ICU in the Washington, D.C., area and one of only a handful in the nation.

We offer:

  • Around-the-clock specialty care. Our full-time neurocritical staff includes several neuro-intensivists who staff the unit 24 hours a day. These physicians are specifically trained in caring for extremely fragile children with a neurological injury or complex condition or who are recovering from surgery.
  • Family-focused resources. We offer private patient rooms and dedicated waiting and resting areas so families can stay close by while their child is with us. We also offer dedicated social workers and support staff who are available to help guide families and provide resources throughout their time in the Neurocritical Care Unit and beyond.
  • Dedicated and specialized experts. We have multidisciplinary teams created specifically to work together to advance care and outcomes for particular injuries and illnesses, providing your child with the most focused and individualized care.
  • State-of-the-art equipment. Our unit is equipped with the latest technology and monitoring equipment that allows us to continually evaluate your child’s brain activity and blood flow and adjust their care plan accordingly. These include continuous video EEG monitoring, intracranial pressure monitoring and near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS).

For infants with brain-related illnesses and injuries, Children’s National also offers dedicated neurocritical care for newborns through our top-ranked Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

The Neurocritical Care team at Children’s National includes:

  • Critical care neurologists
  • Specialists in pediatric critical care
  • Interventional neuroradiologists
  • Neurosurgeons
  • Nurses
  • Pharmacists
  • Physical therapists
  • Social workers

Conditions We Treat

Some neurologic conditions we treat in the Neurocritical Care Unit include:

  • Recovery from neurosurgery
  • Arterial ischemic stroke
  • Intracranial hemorrhage, including arteriovenous malformation (AVM)
  • Cerebral sinovenous thrombosis (CSVT)
  • Encephalitis/meningitis
  • Status epilepticus, including febrile infection-related epilepsy syndrome (FIRES)
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Anoxic brain injury
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Neuromuscular emergencies, including infantile botulism and Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS)
  • Neurological complications of critical illness 

Contact Us

If you need reach the Neurocritical Care Unit, call 202-476-2120.

Bella's Story

Epilepsy and Seizure

Bella claps her hands while wearing pink eyeglasses and a red hair bow

In the first weeks of life, Bella underwent a series of procedures that her doctors and family agreed were necessary to end constant seizures from hemimegalencephaly (HME), a rare brain disorder in which one half of the brain grows abnormal and large and misbehaves by triggering repeated difficult seizures.

Bella's Story

Neurocritical Care Team