Conditions + Treatments

Stroke in children

LIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke ThisLIke This

Contact the Cerebrovascular Disorders And Stroke Program

  • 1-617-355-2758
Is my child having a stroke?

If you see any of these symptoms in your child, don’t wait—go directly to an emergency room.
  • weakness on one side of the body
  • difficulty speaking
  • difficulty walking or instability when standing
  • vision loss
  • first-time seizure
  • a change in mental state
Transient ischemic attack

Short episodes of weakness or numbness on one side of the body, difficulty speaking or a “room spinning” sensation may mean your child is having a transient ischemic attack (TIA), a possible warning sign of stroke that requires immediate evaluation in an emergency room.

A stroke is a general term used to describe an injury to the brain caused by either bleeding (referred to as hemorrhagic) or a lack of oxygen (referred to as ischemic).

  • A stroke usually implies some type of permanent injury to the brain
  • The term infarct or infarction may also refer to a stroke

Here at Boston Children's Hospital, our Department of Neurosurgery works with many other health care teams throughout the hospital in a multidisciplinary effort dedicated to the treatment of children with strokes.

How Boston Children's Hospital approaches pediatric stroke

Our physicians are committed to a rigorous understanding of which practices constitute the very best standard of care for your child. Strokes and related disorders can have broad-reaching effects.  At Children's, we aim to understand and treat all elements of a child's condition.

  • Our Cerebrovascular Disorders and Stroke (CVD and Stroke) Program provides:
    • Fast, comprehensive evaluations to quickly identify if a stroke has occurred and why
    • Combined expertise in child neurology, pediatric neurosurgery, hematology, neurointerventional radiology, pediatric neuroradiology, emergency medicine, child psychiatry, physical and occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy, in one specialized program
    • Access to therapies administered in the earliest stages of stroke that are designed to remove blockages of brain blood vessels
    • Direct referral to physical therapists, occupational therapists, or speech and language therapists to help children address and improve any affected functions
    • Long-term multidisciplinary care to prevent additional strokes 
  • Our Neurosurgical Stroke Program provides exceptional care for children of all ages with strokes or related conditions that call for neurosurgical treatment.
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