The Division offers the following specialty clinics and services:
Neural Tube Defects Clinic
The Clinic provides a comprehensive management approach for children and young adults with neural tube defects, both open and closed. The multidisciplinary team includes medical directors Hal S. Meltzer, M.D., and Andrew Skalsky, M.D., (Chief of the Rehabilitation Medicine Division), as well as specialists from Orthopedics, Urology, Pediatric Surgery, nursing, enterostomal therapy, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, genetic counseling, and social work. Neurosurgeon Justin M. Brown, M.D., who is a member of the International Society for Restorative Neurology, is exploring techniques for restoring function in related central nervous system disorders, such as spina bifida and spinal cord injury.
Along with offering diagnostic and evaluative services, the Clinic provides telephone consultations for families and professionals; patient/family education on spina bifida; patient/family training in bladder and bowel management and other areas; skin and wound care; genetic counseling, psychosocial counseling; and access to other clinical and community services.
Brain Tumor Program
The Brain Tumor Program is one of the largest pediatric programs for children with brain tumors in the western United States. Physicians, nurses, social workers, child life specialists, parent liaisons and chaplains help each family through the initial surgery and subsequent radiation and/or chemotherapy regimens. The program specializes in the treatment of complex tumors involving the midline, posterior fossa, cerebello-pontine angle, and skull base. John Crawford, M.D., M.S., director of Rady Children’s Neuro-Oncology Program and co-director of the multidisciplinary Neuro-Oncology Comprehensive Clinic, leads the monthly CNS tumor conferences.
Complex radiation therapies are provided by Dr. Meltzer and Kevin Murphy, M.D., chief of the Pediatric Radiation Oncology Service and an active member of the Children’s Oncology Group. Dr. Murphy has used and fostered the development of a number of emerging techniques in the treatment of brain tumors in children, including stereotactic radiosurgery, stereotactic radiotherapy, intensity-modulated stereotactic radiosurgery/therapy, hypo-fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy, and GliaSite®/Iotrex brachytherapy. Dr. Meltzer runs the Gamma Knife Stereotactic Program.
Along with starting a cerebral tissue bank at Rady Children’s, the Division has developed close relationships with laboratories at The Scripps Research Institute, UC San Diego and the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute.
Brachial Plexus Clinic
A multidisciplinary team from Orthopedics, Neurosurgery and Occupational Therapy/Hand Therapy – along with physician assistants and nurse clinic coordinator – provides comprehensive evaluations and follow-up services for children with brachial plexus injuries. Dr. Justin Brown directs the Neurosurgery Peripheral Nerve Program. Read more about the Brachial Plexus Clinic.
The Vascular Program, under the direction of Dr. Levy, provides a comprehensive approach to complex vascular lesions. Malformations of the skin are treated by a highly skilled and multidisciplinary team, including renowned specialists in plastic and craniofacial surgery, neurosurgery, diagnostic imaging and interventional radiology, laser surgery, genetics, orthopedics, otolaryngology, ophthalmology, and dermatology. (Lawrence F. Eichenfield, M.D., Director of Rady Children’s Vascular Lesion and Birthmark Center, is an internationally recognized expert in pediatric and adolescent dermatology.)
Intracranial and intraspinal lesions are treated by a combination of interventional, surgical, and stereotactic radiosurgical approaches. Alexander Khalessi, M.D., Director of the Pediatric Endovascular Neurosurgery Program, is one of the nation’s leading practitioners of minimally invasive techniques for brain aneurysms, brain arteriovenous malformations, intracranial and extracranial vascular disease, and minimally invasive spine interventions. Surgical interventions include intra-operative CT angiography, intraoperative angiography (with or without concurrent embolization), frameless stereotaxy, thermal imaging, and cardiac standstill.
Rady Children’s has partnered with Scripps Health to offer proton therapy to children and young adults with brain and central nervous system tumors. Pediatric patients in San Diego and referred from out of the area will be followed by our Neuro-Oncology team during their treatment. Read more.