Periventricular Leukomalacia Pediatric Research and Clinical Trials

Research & Innovation

All of the neurologists in the Fetal Neonatology Program at Boston Children’s Hospital are actively engaged in research that helps us diagnose periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) and other neurological conditions quickly and accurately, understand them deeply and develop more effective treatments.

Understanding and treating periventricular leukomalacia

Boston Children’s neurologist, Joseph Volpe, MD, has made his life’s work the study of periventricular leukomalacia (PVL), a condition that is responsible for many cognitive, behavioral and motor disabilities in children born prematurely. Volpe’s work has helped doctors understand which infants are at risk for this sort of brain injury and how it could be prevented or treated. Volpe is considered by many to have founded the field of neonatal neurology. His textbook, Neurology of the Newborn, is a standard in the field.

Children who develop PVL often have problems with their vision that is related to the brain injury instead of a problem with the eyes. This “cerebral visual impairment” can be difficult to diagnose and treat. It is important to identify this problem because these types of visual impairments can affect a child’s ability to learn in school. Janet Soul, MD, is conducting a research study of cerebral visual impairment in children who were born prematurely.

To learn more

If you want to look for other clinical trials going on throughout Boston Children’s, you can search here.