Complex paediatric neurosurgery
Complex paediatric neurosurgery includes:
- Complex brain tumours
- Alterations in the cerebrospinal fluid (complex cases of hydrocephalus or intracranial hypertension or extremely small children with obstructive or post-haemorrhagic hydrocephalus)
- Craniofacial syndrome malformations (Apert-Crouzon and Carpenter’s syndrome among others)
- Malformations of the fusion of cranio-cervical bones affecting the surrounding structures (such as Chiari malformations combined with anterior spine compression)
- Rare spinal cord disorders
In general, these are unusual and highly complex diseases. Many are included under the sections for rare diseases. For the best results, they should be treated in large centres that have experience of multiple cases every year and that are equipped with the technology required to treat these disorders.
Each condition has its own characteristics. In the case of a brain tumour, the child’s symptoms will depend on the area of the brain where the tumour is located.
When there are cases of decompensated hydrocephalus or severe intracranial hypertension, in other words, when there is increased pressure inside the skull, the child may have headaches, visual disturbances and may go into a coma.
Craniofacial malformations are characterised by severe deformities of the bones in the skull and face.
Who is affected by these disorders?
They tend to be rare. It is unusual to treat more than ten cases of each pathology per year.
Diagnosis of neurosurgical pathologies includes:
- Advanced neuroimaging studies (conventional magnetic resonance imaging and special sequences and vascular studies)
- Neurophysiological tests (evoked potential or sleep studies)
- Collaboration with professionals from other areas (neurologists, ophthalmologists, oncologists, etc.)
Assessing the results also involves psychologists or other professionals to objectively observe changes in cognitive function and quality of life.
Treatment of pathologies covered by complex paediatric neurosurgery is usually surgical. This means having an operating room equipped with advanced technology that allows intraoperative monitoring, and specialised anaesthetists and nursing staff.
Unfortunately there are no known preventative measure for these disorders. Our principal task is to restore lost function and achieve the best results so that, where possible, the child can develop normally and integrate as much as possible into family life, school and socially.
Hospital o serveis complementaris relacionats
Children's Hospital and Woman's Hospital