Nicklaus Children's Brain Institute provides state-of-the-art medical and surgical care for a full spectrum of pediatric neurological disorders. We have a comprehensive range of specialists, programs and clinics covering the following conditions:
See Congenital Abnormalities of the Central Nervous System (CNS).
Anencephaly is a birth defect that affects the developing brain and skull bones of newborn babies.
Arachnoid cysts are fluid filled sacs or cavities of surrounding cells and collagen, that appear on the arachnoid membrane and can present in many locations on the brain and/or spinal cord.
When a tear occurs in the lining of one of the body’s arteries, this is known as an arterial dissection.
Arteries are the blood vessels that carry blood, oxygen and nutrients to all tissues of the body. An ischemic stroke occurs when an artery supplying the brain is damaged, ruptures or is blocked, causing the flow of blood to be interrupted from reaching the brain. Strokes can occur at all ages.
The typical flow of blood through the body involves blood passing from the arteries to the smaller capillaries before entering the veins. When an arteriovenous fistula is present, the blood passes directly from the high-pressure fast-flowing arteries to the veins which are normally only exposed to a low pressure from the capillaries.
An Astrocytoma is a form of brain tumor (benign or cancerous), that develops in the cells that form the supportive tissue of the brain.
Attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity (ADHD) is the most common behavioral disorder of childhood, affecting 3 to 7 percent of school-age children.
An atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor, is a fairly rare aggressive tumor usually diagnosed in young children that forms in the tissues of the Central Nervous System.
Autism refers to a group of neurodevelopmental disorders that makes it difficult for a child to interact socially, communicate verbally and non-verbally and connect with people.
Bell’s palsy is a sudden unexplained episode of weakness or paralysis of part of the face muscles, usually on one side, that can occur at any age.
Dwarfism is a type of short stature. There are hundreds of different medical conditions that can affect ultimate size and/or the growth of an infant.
The brachial plexus is a sub-network of peripheral nerves that originate in the neck region and branch off to control movement and sensation in the shoulders, arm, forearm and hand.
A brain abscess is a localized brain infection where the material from the inflammation ( pus and cells ) has collected and been walled off.
The brain and its coverings can become infected by a wide variety of infections which include bacteria, viruses and uncommonly parasites and fungi.
Traumatic brain injury or Primary injury to the brain occurs after a direct blow to the head which results in a diminished function of the brain.
A brain tumor is the growth of abnormal cells in the brain or near the brain.
Cavernous malformations are frequently small clusters of blood vessels that form abnormally.
CDKL5 (Cyclin-Dependent Kinase-Like 5) is a gene located on the X-chromosome. The CDKL5 gene is required to function normally for a normal brain to develop.
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a disorder affecting a child’s ability to move in a coordinated manner.
Cerebral venous thrombosis is an increasingly recognized cause of stroke in a newborn baby, or children, about 40% of childhood CSVT’s.
The choroid plexus is the tissue that lies in the cavities of the brain (called ventricles and there are four of them) that creates the fluid (cerebrospinal fluid) which surrounds and cushions the brain and spinal cord.
CLOVES syndrome is a very rare congenital disorder that is characterized by the presence of several problems together.
Concussion is the temporary abnormality in the way the brain works that occurs after a traumatic jolting of the brain following a blow, bump or shaking of the head (injury).
Congenital abnormalities of the CNS are birth defects of the physical structure of the brain or spinal cord that occur during fetal intrauterine growth.
Any unusual physical feature or health problem that is present at the birth of a baby is known as a birth defect or a congenital anomaly.
Congenital deformities of the spine are usually identified at birth. Many are minor bony abnormalities that cause no problem and are only found during X-rays done for other reasons.
Craniofacial is a broad medical term that describes abnormalities of the bones of the skull and face.
A craniopharyngioma is a non-cancerous brain tumor that develops from cells present during early brain development, and in childhood frequently presents between the ages of 5-14 years.
When a baby has craniosynostosis, however, one or more of the bones of the skull are joined together by bone prematurely, which may lead to problems depending on which, and how many sutures have closed early.
Cushing syndrome is a relatively rare hormone problem in children (it usually occurs in the 25-40 year age group) associated with too much of the “stress hormone” cortisol (which helps your child's body respond to illness or injury) being present.
The myelin sheath is a protective fatty material that wraps, protects and insulates the nerve fibers of the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves.
Whenever a child fails to reach a set of developmental milestone for physical/motor, in language and communication, social, or behavioral function, and/or cognitive ability at their expected time, it's known as developmental delay.
Glial tissue are cells of the brain that protects and supports the neurons. Tumors that start in the glial tissue at the base of the brain in the brainstem area (which controls breathing, heart rate and blood pressure plus other functions) called the Pons, just above the back of the neck, are called diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas.
See Spinal Cord Injury.
See Bone Dysplasia.
Encephalitis is a rare inflammation of the brain, which has a number of causes.
An encephalocele is a rare disorder where the bones of a fetus’s skull do not close all the way resulting in a space through which the tissues surrounding the brain and brain tissue itself bulges.
Childhood epilepsy is a brain disorder that causes an infant or a child to have repeated seizures over time.
Erb’s palsy is a form of brachial nerve palsy that occurs in newborn babies which is characterized by weakness, loss of feeling and difficulty moving the affected arm.
In order to make facial expressions, (e.g. smiling or closing one's eyes) the brain sends a signal to the muscles of our face through the 7th cranial nerve called the facial nerve.
Please see Facial motion disorders.
Fetal Alcohol spectrum are a group of birth defects that occur when a woman drinks alcohol while pregnant.
Fibrous dysplasia is an uncommon bone disease frequently affecting one bone (the skull or long bones of the arms and legs)
Genetic diseases are conditions that occur due to a mutation in a gene ( a unit of hereditary ) in your body’s cells.
Glioblastoma multiforme are high-grade 1V, aggressively growing, cancerous glial tumors which infiltrate into healthy adjacent brain tissue, frequently occurring in both boys and girls aged 5-10 years.
Glioma is a form of cancer that develops from glial cells of the brain - those cells which support and nourish the neurons.
Astrocytes are star-shaped cells that are part of a glial network of supportive and nourishing tissue within the brain. One rare form of malignant tumor that grows and infiltrates aggressively from these cells and which spreads over the top and throughout the brain is known as gliomatosis cerebri.
When the body’s own immune system mistakenly attacks the nerves of the body, usually following a gastrointestinal or respiratory tract infection, the group of diseases that result is known as Guillain-Barre syndrome.
A Hamartoma is a benign, or noncancerous tumor. It is a mixture of normal tissues/cells that grow abnormally in the place where the tissue/cells normally are found.
Head and spine trauma refer to injuries or accidents that affect an individual’s brain and/or spinal cord.
Any type of pain in the head, neck, and face can be classified as a headache.
Hemorrhage means bleeding. Bleeding into the brain occurs after either a clot forms in a vessel carrying blood to it or a brain blood vessel breaks because of an abnormality or disease of the blood vessel.
Hereditary neuropathy is a medical term that refers to a group of different inherited medical conditions that cause progressive loss of function (and sensation) from abnormally working nerves that carry signals from the spinal cord to muscles.
Hydrocephalus is primarily an excessive accumulation of fluid in the brain. This excess of cerebrospinal fluid accumulation causes the fluid spaces of the brain to enlarge. The cause is not well understood but can be congenital or acquired in nature.
Hyperhidrosis is the medical term for excessive sweating.
Inflammation is the process that the body uses to respond to an infection or irritating process.
Please see Hemorrhagic Stroke for further information.
“Ischemia” is the lack of blood supply to an organ resulting in not enough oxygen being delivered to meet the needs of the organ to function normally. When this happens to the blood supply of the brain it's called an “ischemic stroke”.
Landau-Kleffner syndrome is a rare neurological disorder that causes sudden or gradual development of language difficulties and, in some cases recurrent seizures in children, starting between the ages of 2 and 8 years.
When a child has a head circumference that is larger than normal (for the infant's gestational age, age, sex and race), the medical term is macrocephaly.
Moyamoya disease is a rare disease, frequently seen in children, that causes the blood vessels in the neck to narrow.
Muscular dystrophy describes a broad group of many ( there are 9 major types ), chronic, progressive illnesses that cause the muscles of the body to become increasingly weak and less flexible over time.
A myelomeningocele is a bulge or sac of the fluid that surround the spinal cord.
A neural tube defect is a birth defect that occurs very early in the development of a fetus, often during the first month of pregnancy, where the brain, spinal cord and spinal column do not develop normally.
Neurofibromatosis is a medical term that refers to a group of three unique but related disorders of the nervous system.
Neurogenetic and neurometabolic abnormalities are disorders that affect how the brain ( and/or other organs) function.
When peripheral nerves get injured, they can cause a variety of problems in the parts of the body that those nerves serve.
It is a condition characterized by a flattening of the skull on one side or on the back of the head.
"Pseudotumor cerebri" is a medical term that physicians use to describe a chronic increase in pressure in the skull and around the brain that occurs for no apparent reason.
Whenever the skull bone breaks, regardless of the severity, nature, or extent of the breakage, it is known as a skull fracture.
Spasticity is one form of movement disorder, that presents as increased tone or stiffness of the muscles that causes an inability to produce and control bodily movements.
The spinal cord is a group of nerves that run down the back of a person that carries messages from the brain to the rest of the body. Acute spinal cord injury in children is fairly uncommon, frequently occurs in adolescents/ young adults and are often male.
If a tumor grows within (~ 10%), in the tissues around, or spreads from a different site to the spinal cord region, it is known as a spinal cord tumor.
A stroke is brain damage caused by either not enough blood reaching the brain due to blockage of or bleeding from blood vessels or from one or more of the large veins being blocked in the brain.
Syringomyelia is a rare chronic condition where fluid forms a cyst (syrinx) in the spinal cord.
A tethered cord is held fixed or held taught by a band (usually at the end of the cord) in the spinal canal.
Tuberous sclerosis is a rare genetic disease, often diagnosed during infancy or childhood, that causes benign tumors to grow in many parts of the body, including the brain, heart, kidneys, lungs and skin.
Vascular malformations are congenital lesions, resulting from abnormal development of arteries, veins or lymphatic system vessels.
During early fetal development the barrier between the very small arteries and the veins that normally slows the blood flow down, are missing, causing the blood to flow faster between artery and vein. This can result in the vein of Galen bulging.