Neonatal Stroke

What is neonatal stroke?

Neonatal stroke is stroke in newborns between birth and 28 days. It occurs in as many as 1 in 2500 full-term infants and even more commonly in babies born prematurely. Sometimes strokes even occur before birth. Most often, neonatal stroke is discovered shortly after birth in babies who have seizures or who are weak and unresponsive, and confirmed through neuroimaging.

How we care for neonatal stroke

Despite the immaturity of the newborn brain, neonatal stroke can have lasting effects when it occurs. For this reason, early diagnosis and prompt treatment are crucial. The diverse team of specialists in the Stroke and Cerebrovascular Center at Boston Children's Hospital provides fast, comprehensive evaluation to identify quickly if and why a stroke has occurred. We work closely with neonatologists in the neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) at Boston Children's, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center to provide state-of-the-art care for newborns with stroke. Our team approach means that your child will benefit from the combined expertise of child neurologists, pediatric neurosurgeons, hematologists, neurointerventional radiologists, pediatric neuroradiologists, emergency medicine physicians, physiatrists, child psychiatrists, physical and occupational therapists and speech and language therapists, not only while in the hospital, but also during extensive out-patient follow-up for years to come. We also offer long-term multidisciplinary care to help prevent future strokes.