Boston Children's Hospital is one of the few centers in the world that specialize in minimally invasive, image guided treatments for disorders of the brain, head and neck, and spine in babies and children.
The Neurointerventional Radiology program, led by Director Darren B. Orbach, MD , PhD, is a component of Neuroradiology in the Radiology Department. It is also closely affiliated with the hospital's Vascular Anomalies Center and the departments of Neurosurgery, Neurology, and Surgery.
Blood flows normally through a toddler's basilar artery two years after a ruptured aneurysm was repaired with embolization coils (seen in the original image at left and by the blue arrow at right).By threading catheters and tiny instruments through your child's blood vessels, a neurointerventional radiologist can assess and treat conditions for which surgery has traditionally been needed. This can reduce risk, pain and recovery time.
Because of their unique anatomy and small size, neurointerventional procedures in babies and children require special techniques, along with tools and equipment that have been created or modified for pediatric use. Our entire team--interventional radiologists, nurse practitioners, nurses, technologists and recovery room staff--all specialize in caring for children undergoing interventional radiology procedures.
Arterial diseases of the brain: Arterial disorders such as stroke, Moyamoya Disease and aneurysms are rare in children, but they do occur. We perform angiograms to determine the nature of the problem and intervene with therapeutic procedures, when appropriate. Intra-arterial treatment for acute stroke, currently offered only to adults at specialized centers, is being pioneered in children here.
Arteriovenous malformations: When veins and arteries in the brain, head and neck, or spine become entangled and establish pathological flow patterns, they can cause problems that range from mild to potentially life-threatening. We use minimally invasive techniques to visualize and evalute the malformation in great detail and--where possible--cut off the supply of blood to the abnormal vessels (embolization). These treatments may be effective on their own for some conditions (such as Vein of Galen Malformation), or they may be part of a set of procedures that includes surgery (for many brain AVMs, for example).
Facial and extracranial vascular malformations: The hospital is a worldwide referral center for the treatment of vascular anomalies in babies and children. We are experts in the non-surgical treatment of these conditions and we also work closely with vascular and plastic surgeons to formulate combined treatment options.
Venous disease: Conditions such as venous sinus thrombosis may require catheter-based intervention.
Because many of our procedures rely on X-ray technology, we have adapted our equipment and protocols to keep radiation exposure as low as reasonably achievable (the ALARA standard) during your child's procedure. Read more.