Pediatric Neurovascular Procedures

At the Pediatric Cerebrovascular Program at the Cerebrovascular Center at Mount Sinai, our endovascular neurosurgeons specialize in newborns, infants, and children with neurovascular conditions involving the brain, spinal cord, and the spinal column. We diagnose and treat more than 200 of these cases each year. Thanks to our extensive experience, we know that children are not little adults and that we must take a special approach to their care. We know, for instance, that it is important to minimize fluids with babies, that we need to use pediatric doses of medications and radiation for young ones, and that children’s blood vessels require appropriately sized catheters. We lean toward acting proactively, often choosing early intervention.

Our team, led by Alejandro Berenstein, MD, includes surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, and technologists, and is expert in performing pediatric cerebrovascular procedures.

Some pediatric neurovascular procedures are relatively rare. These include vein of Galen malformations (a type of brain arteriovenous malformationarteriovenous fistulas of the brain, and other AVMs. Since these conditions do not arise often, many surgical, pediatric, and endovascular practices do not have extensive experience diagnosing and treating them.

Our pediatric treatments often include combinations of traditional surgery, minimally invasive endovascular surgery, embolization, sclerotherapy, image-guided technology and pediatric interventional radiology, and medications.

We have pioneered and developed many such procedures and have gained recognition for our treatment of children. We use a variety of pediatric interventional radiology procedures:

  • Embolization delivers clotting agents directly to an area that is bleeding to stop or block blood flow.
  • Stenting uses stainless steel or plastic mesh sleeves to prop open clogged or blocked arteries and keep them from closing up again.
  • Thrombolysis dissolves blood clots by injecting anti-clotting agents directly to the clot.
  • Minimally invasive surgery
  • Management of stroke
  • Cerebral revascularization, which involves diverting blood to areas of the brain where the flow is restricted
  • Neurophysiological monitoring during surgery