Meet Our Spina Bifida Experts

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Contact the Spina Bifida and Spinal Cord Conditions Center

  • 617-355-8532
  • International: +1-617-355-5209
  • Locations

Our spina bifida team includes pioneers in spina bifida treatment, world-renowned surgeons and physicians, Harvard Medical School professors, experienced nurse practitioners and even specialists who train doctors overseas on the latest techniques for treating spina bifida.

Spina Bifida Team 

Meet the Spina Bifida Team at Boston Children's Hospital

Patients and their families can see many of these specialists in one visit- a fact that sets us apart from most other spina bifida centers.

Our Surgeons

Estrada MDCarlos R. Estrada, Jr., MD, is the director of Boston Children's Spina Bifida Center, director of the Voiding Improvement Program, co-director of the Urodynamics and Neurourology Program and a member of the Department of Urology. Estrada completed his fellowship at Boston Children's and joined the faculty here in 2006. His research interests include tissue engineering, stem cell biology, and neurogenic bladder dysfunction. He is an Assistant Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School.


Borer MDJoseph G. Borer, MD, is the co-director of Boston Children's Robotic Surgery, Research and Training Program and director of our Center For Bladder Exstrophy Care and Support Group and Urodynamics and Neurourology Program. Borer's research focuses on bladder physiology and function and reconstructive pediatric urology. He completed his fellowship at Boston Children's and joined our faculty in 1998. Borer is an Assistant Professor of Urological Surgery at Harvard Medical School.


Lawrence Ira Karlin, MD is an orthopedic surgeon who also supports Boston Children's Neuromotor Therapy Program, Orthopedic Trauma Program and Spinal Program. He completed his surgical fellowship at Boston Children's and has treated pediatric surgery patients for nearly 30 years. Karlin's research interests include spinal deformities and improving the quality of life of children with musculoskeletal disorders. He is an Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School.


Benjamin C. Warf, MD, began his career as the first pediatric neurosurgery fellow at Boston Children's. As Director of Boston Children’s Neonatal and Congenital Anomaly Neurosurgery, he is one of the world’s foremost practitioners of the endoscopic third ventriculostomy procedure to replace the use of shunts in children with hydrocephalus. Warf is committed to introducing this minimally invasive procedure in developing nations, where children's access to aftercare is severely limited.  He travels regularly to Africa to train other pediatric neurosurgeons. In addition to hydrocephalus and spina bifida, Warf is also an expert in treating cerebral palsy and Tethered Spinal Cord. He is an Associate Professor of Neurosurgery at Harvard Medical School.

Our Physicians

Nedda Hobbs MDNedda M. Hobbs, MD, is the associate director of Boston Children's Complex Care Services. Hobbs specializes in treating spina bifida, autism and pervasive developmental disorders and severe developmental disabilities. Her research focuses on complexities of care in children with spina bifida and other neurological conditions, and she is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School.

Michelle A. Baum, MD, is a member of Boston Children's Division of Nephrology. She specializes in treating children with spina bifida, kidney stones and other nephrological issues. Baum is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Nina Ma, MD, CCDNina Ma, MD, is an endocrinologist and director of the Boston Children’s Bone Health Program. She is certified in pediatric endocrinology and fellowship-trained at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.




Our Nurse Practitioners

Rebecca L. Sherlock, MSN, PNP, is a pediatric nurse practitioner who specializes in treating children with spina bifida and other neuromuscular conditions. Rebecca is the clinical coordinator and one of the nurse practitioners who will care for your child and coordinate all of his or her care.

Elizabeth “Betsy” Tannebring, CPNP, is a pediatric nurse practitioner whose specialties include spina bifida, chronic illness and developmental and behavioral pediatrics. Betsy is a Complex Care Services specialist who will consider all of your child’s needs.

Fiona Paul, DNP, is a doctor of nursing practice in pediatric gastroenterology. She focuses on nutrition and works with inpatient care as well as our Motility and Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders Center.

Our Neuropsychologists

Jennifer Turek Queally, PhD, is a neuropsychologist who supports our children with spina bifida and their families. She also treats patients in Boston Children's Brain Tumor Program, Neuropsychology Program and Psychosocial Therapy Clinic. Queally is an instructor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School.

Our Social Workers and Therapists

Maria Carvalho, MSW, LICSW, is a social worker who provides counseling and other support services for children with spina bifida and their families. Maria is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese.

Megan Geno, DPT, is a physical therapist who works with patients with spina bifida to improve their motor skills, coordination and mobility.

The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 617-355-6000 | 800-355-7944