Pediatric Neurosurgery

Lurie Children’s Division of Neurosurgery is one of the busiest in North America, seeing more than 5,000 outpatients and performing approximately 1,000 surgeries a year. In fact, our neurosurgeons care for more children with disorders of the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system) than any other hospital in Illinois. The program’s services are renowned outside the state, as well — U.S.News & World Report has ranked Lurie Children’s as 6th in the nation for pediatric neurology and neurosurgery.

The division’s Spina Bifida Center is internationally known for its expertise in spina bifida. Our Brain Tumor Center ranks among the top pediatric centers in the world for the diagnosis, treatment and research of childhood brain tumors. The survival rates after surgery when neurosurgical treatment is needed are among the best in the country for both of these programs.

Some of our other specialized areas include:

We offer some of the most advanced neurosurgical technology available. For example, Lurie Children’s was the first children’s hospital in Illinois, and among the first in the country, to acquire the NICO Myriad™, a minimally invasive surgical device that makes removal of brain and spine tumors easier and faster.


Our entire staff is dedicated to evaluating and treating infants, children and teens. The team includes:

Our surgeons often collaborate with neurologists, neuro-oncologists, neurointensivists and other specialists at Lurie Children’s. We are part of several multidisciplinary teams, including those that treat:

Tadanori Tomita, MD, the head of the division, is board certified in both pediatric and adult neurologic surgery and has nearly 20 years of experience as a neurosurgeon. Dr. Tomita is the Medical Director of the Falk Brain Tumor Center and the Yeager Professor of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Lurie Children’s. He also is a Professor of Neurological Surgery at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine


A multidisciplinary team of experienced healthcare providers will care for your child. This team approach makes it easier for you to see every specialist your child needs under one roof and often in the same visit.

We offer a joint Pediatric and Adolescent Neurovascular Disease and Stroke Program with Northwestern Memorial Hospital. This program combines the training and skills of our pediatric neurosurgeons with the capabilities of Northwestern’s cerebrovascular surgeons, who have experience treating neurologic conditions that can affect children. This partnership also helps Lurie Children’s efforts to assist our teenage patients in the transition from pediatric to adult care.

Our team believes in family-centered care, treating you and your child with great care, compassion and respect. We provide support and resources for the whole family.

Our neurosurgeons and scientists are committed to research that will translate help create a better understanding of brain tumors and other neurologic conditions in children. We are conducting research studies in patients and in the laboratory. 

Ongoing studies include:

  • Brain stem tumors: Development of targeted chemotherapy drug delivery to brain stem tumors such as gliomas, which will allow for a small chemotherapy dose to go directly to the tumor, therefore decreasing treatment side effects
  • Hydrocephalus: Finding ways to avoid inserting a shunt into the head of patients with hydrocephalus, to drain their buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in the brain
  • Spina bifida: Identification of biomolecules that could repair, through “molecular stitching,” an ultrasound-detected open neural tube defect such as spina bifida in a baby still n the womb

The Division of Neurosurgery offers a popular one-year fellowship in pediatric neurosurgery through the Feinberg School. This fellowship program has trained more than 10% of all board-certified pediatric neurosurgeons in the U.S.

Make an Appointment 

If you’d like to request an appointment with one of our specialists, call 1.800.543.7362 (1.800.KIDS DOC®). You can also request an appointment online


Private contributions have supported potentially lifesaving research, including finding better ways to treat brain tumors in children.

Your support is vital in helping us continue to make a difference in the lives of patients and families. Lurie Children’s relies on philanthropic funding to enhance its programs, services and research for children. To learn more, please e-mail Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago Foundation at, call 312.227.7500 or make a gift today.

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​Transitioning to Home Care

Almost Home Kids (AHK), now part of the Lurie Children’s family, cares for children with complicated health needs by providing family training, respite care and short-term transitional care in a home-like setting. AHK is staffed with medical professionals and volunteers to make sure every child and their families are prepared for the return home. The Division of Neurosurgery works closely with Almost Home Kids to make the care transition process as easy as possible.

Learn more about AHK.