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Pediatric Anesthesia

Lurie Children’s Division of Anesthesiology administers more than 15,000 anesthetics a year to treat children with all types of conditions. The division provides safe and state-of-the art sedation, pain management, critical care and surgical anesthesia for procedures using the highest standards in medicine. The division is a national leader of research into drugs, equipment and techniques to increase the safety of administering anesthesia to children.

About Pediatric Anesthesiologists

Anesthesiologists are trained in all aspects of perioperative care. This includes the preoperative assessment of a patient, the optimization of fitness for surgery, the intra-operative management of anesthesia and the post-operative care of surgical patients.

A general anesthesiologist is a trained physician who has completed a medical degree and has undergone a one-year internship followed by a three-year residency program in the practice of anesthesiology. Although all anesthesia training programs include some training in pediatric anesthesiology, their brief exposure to the care of children does not certify that a physician with this training is truly qualified as a pediatric anesthesiologist.

However, a pediatric anesthesiologist, in addition to finishing general training in anesthesiology, successfully completes an additional specialized year of fellowship training in pediatric anesthesiology at an accredited institution.

Pediatric anesthesiologists also train in the management of intensive care patients and the treatment of post-operative and chronic pain. Our pediatric fellowship is an intensive experience in the administration of anesthesia to newborns, premature infants, toddlers and older children. Upon completion of the fellowship, the anesthesiologist typically enters a pediatric-based anesthesiology practice to maintain and further refine their skills.


Our anesthesiologists are fully trained in pediatric anesthesia and practice pediatric anesthesia full-time. The department has teams dedicated to pain management, pediatric chronic pain and innovative airway anesthesia.

The hospital offers one of the largest training programs for pediatric anesthesiologists in the country, and the department serves as a benchmark for other institutions nationwide for advanced postoperative pain management.

Richard M. Dsida, MD, is Interim Chair of the Department of Pediatric Anesthesiology at Lurie Children’s. Dr. Dsida is board-certified in anesthesiology. He is also an Associate Professor of Anesthesiology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.


Pediatric anesthesiologists are best equipped to safely care for children, especially babies and toddlers, because of their specialized understanding of how children’s bodies work, how children react to medications and anesthesia and how the illnesses children suffer from differ from those in older patients.

We also offer specialized programs, including:

  • Post-operative pain relief
  • Chronic pain services
  • Patient-controlled analgesia

Our Programs

Our anesthesiologists strive to make sure your child feels the least amount of pain possible during and after procedures. We have specialized programs to meet this need.

Conditions We Treat


If you’d like to request an appointment with one of our specialists, call 1.800.543.7362 (1.800.KIDS DOC®) or visit our Appointments page for more information. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Patients and families often have questions about what to expect when a child is put under anesthesia. We have answers to many of the most common questions.


The Department of Pediatric Anesthesiology is continuously dedicated to pursuing the advancement of pediatric anesthesiology and enhancing the safety and comfort of our young patients through clinical research.

Education & Training

Keeping with our belief that quality education is inseparable from our quality patient care, we partner with Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine to train tomorrow’s leading pediatric physicians. As the pediatric teaching hospital for the Feinberg School, we offer several opportunities for residents to further their education in a pediatric specialty.