When your child’s life or health is at risk due to a neurological or neuromuscular condition, you need a team experienced in caring for children. The Tulane Health System Neuroscience Center has specialists experienced in treating children’s developing nervous system — including the brain, spine and nerves. We provide child-centered care in a family-friendly environment at the Tulane Lakeside Hospital for Women and Children.
We specialize in caring for children while also working with parents and families to make sure you have the information and support you need — from diagnosis through treatment, recovery and beyond. We draw from all the resources offered by the Tulane Health System, as well as community resources, to meet the specific needs of your child and family.
Because we are part of a respected academic medical center, working in partnership with the Tulane University School of Medicine, our staff members are committed to advancing treatment and caring for pediatric conditions. We offer access to clinical trials of promising new treatment options if you choose to participate. Whatever the condition, your child will be in skilled, experienced and caring hands.
Pediatric neurological and neuromuscular conditions
Our specialists provide comprehensive care for children with disorders that involve the brain, spine or nervous system, including:
- Autism spectrum disorder. Children with this neurodevelopmental disorder can have symptoms from mild to severe, including problems with social interaction and communication. They may have narrowed interests and repetitive behaviors, and they may be at risk for epilepsy and seizures. Most professionals agree that early intervention is best. While it can’t be cured, it can often be managed with behavioral therapy, medication and other care. Many people with ASD live highly productive, creative and fulfilling lives.
- Brain tumors and neuro-oncology. Brain tumors are the most common solid tumors in children. We offer advanced treatment and care for brain, spine and other tumors in children, including minimally invasive procedures and open surgery methods that can minimize tissue damage and reduce recovery time.
- Developmental delays. Children who learn differently may have a neurodevelopmental disorder that can be treated. Understanding the cause can also help healthcare providers, education workers and families provide learning opportunities in the right way and at the right time.
- Epilepsy. Epilepsy in childhood often ends before adulthood with or without treatment, but seizures can result in injury, and interfere with a child’s education, social development and quality of life. Early treatment is ideal, and most cases can be managed with medication. In some rare and severe cases, surgery can help. Our specialists are highly experienced in treating epilepsy and seizures in children.
- Headache/migraine. Chronic headaches and migraines are common in childhood, and headaches can be a sign of a serious condition. Our team can help identify the cause, and can help your child even if no cause can be identified.
- Hydrocephalus. This condition results when cerebrospinal fluid collects in the brain. It can put harmful pressure on sensitive tissues and structures, and can cause physical and mental impairment and other symptoms. Our specialists can treat it with surgery to allow the fluid to continuously drain, and we can connect you with the resources and services your child and family might need.
- Movement disorders. Although movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease, are much more common in adults, children can often develop tics, tremors and other conditions. Treatment can include medication, behavioral therapy, botulinum toxin (Botox®) injections, or, in some cases, surgery.
- Neuromuscular disorders. Muscular dystrophy and other neuromuscular disorders often begin at birth or early in life. The sooner your child gets care and treatment, the better for your child’s future. Our team is skilled in diagnosing, treating and managing neuromuscular disorders, and we can help your family cope with the challenges you may be facing.
- Scoliosis. This sideways curve of the spine usually begins during a child’s growth spurt right before puberty and is more common in girls. The curve can be shaped like a C or an S. Scoliosis can cause serious problems if the curve is severe enough to crowd internal organs or cause disability. Treatment usually requires surgery.
- Sleep disorders. Children can have many of the same sleep disorders that affect adults, such as insomnia and sleep apnea. Children also commonly have problems with nightmares, sleep terror and other sleep problems. Sleep is vital for growing bodies and developing minds, and it’s important to get help before a sleep disorder causes health problems or other issues. Our experienced team provides complete sleep evaluations, treatment and follow-up care.
When researching neurological or neuromuscular conditions in children, make sure your sources are reliable. Here are some good places to start:
- Medline Plus from the National Institutes of Health and the National Library of Medicine
- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
- Child Neurology Foundation