P. David Adelson, MD, FACS, FAAP, FAANS

Director, Barrow Neurological Institute at Phoenix Children’s Hospital Chief of Neurosurgery


P. David Adelson, MD, FACS, FAAP, has been recognized as one of the foremost recognized neurosurgical and neuroscience experts on pediatric head and acquired neural injury maintaining both a clinical and translational laboratory devoted to research in neuroplasticity and recovery following injury. His other clinical and research interests include; pediatric epilepsy, brachial plexus and peripheral nerve injury, as well as, pediatric brain tumors. He has been the recipient of multiple awards, including The Best Doctors in America, Young Investigators Award of the Brain Injury Association, to name a few. His research has resulted in his authoring more than 175 publications in refereed journals, 40 book chapters and has edited 8 books including the well regarded “Principles and Practice of Pediatric Neurosurgery,” the authoritative textbook in the field of pediatric neurosurgery, now in its 3rd Edition. Research Interest Pediatric neural injury, brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerve, in particular the acute clinical management of pediatric TBI as well as in the areas of neural recovery and plasticity of the developing brain following injury with active basic science laboratory as well as clinical research programs, most recently leading the NIH Funded Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury Consortium through both Phase II and Phase III clinical trials on hypothermia following severe traumatic brain injury in children.




Children's Neurosciences / Pediatric Neurosurgery


Fellowship: Children's Hospital of Boston Fellow in Pediatric Neurosurgery - 1994
Medical Education: Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons M.D., Medicine - 1986
Certifications: American Board of Pediatric Neurological Surgery, Recertified 2008 - 1998, American Board of Neurological Surgeons - 1997


  • Adelson PD, Pineda J, Bell MJ, Abend NS, Berger RP, Giza C, Hotz G, Wainwright MS. Common Data Elements for Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury: Recommendations from the Working Group on Demographics and Clinical Assessment. Journal of Neurotrauma, 29:4: 639-653, 2012. [Epub 2011 Nov 7 ]
  • Kochanek PM, Carney N, Adelson PD, et al. Guidelines for the acute medical management of severe traumatic brain injury in infants, children, and adolescents--second edition. Pediatric Critical Care Medicine. 13 Suppl 1:S1-82, 2012.
  • Adelson PD, Ragheb J, Muizelaar JP, Johnson D, Kanev P, Brockmeyer D, Beers S, Brown SB, Cassidy L, Chang Y, Levin H. Phase II clinical trial of moderate hypothermia following severe traumatic brain injury. Neurosurgery. 56 (4): 740-754, 2005.
  • Adelson PD, Wisniewski SR, Beca J, Brown SD, Bell M, Muizelaar JP, Okada P, Beers SR, Balasubramani GK, Hirtz D. Paediatric TBI Consortium. Comparison of hypothermia and normothermia after severe traumatic brain injury in children (Cool Kids): a phase 3, randomised controlled trial. The Lancet Neurology. 12(6): 546-553, 2013.
  • Adelson PD. Hypothermia in pediatric traumatic brain injury. Journal of Neurotrauma. 26 (3): 429-36, 2009.
  • Chin KH, Bell MJ, Wisniewski SR, Balasubramani GK, Kochanek PM, Beers SR, Brown SD, Adelson PD; Effect of Administration of Neuromuscular Blocking Agents in Children With Severe Traumatic Brain Injury on Acute Complication Rates and Outcomes: A Secondary Analysis From a Randomized, Controlled Trial of Therapeutic Hypothermia. Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury Consortium: Hypothermia Investigators. Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2015 May;16(4):352-358.PMID: 25599147
  • Adelson PD, Robichaud RJ, Hamilton RL, Kochanek PM. A model of diffuse traumatic brain injury in the immature rat. Journal of Neurosurgery 85: 5: 877- 884, 1996.
  • Adelson PD, Dixon CE, Kochanek PM. Long-term dysfunction following diffuse traumatic brain injury in the immature rat. Journal of Neurotrauma. 17(4): 273-82, 2000.
  • Casella EM, Thomas TC, Vanino DL, Fellows-Mayle W, Lifshitz J, Card JP, Adelson PD. Traumatic brain injury alters long-term hippocampal neuron morphology in juvenile, but not immature, rats. Childs Nerv Syst. 2014 Aug; 30(8):1333-42. doi: 10.1007/s00381-014-2446-z. Epub 2014 Jun 1.
  • Nichols J, Perez R, Wu C, Adelson PD, Anderson T. Traumatic brain injury induces rapid enhancement of cortical excitability in juvenile rats. CNS Neurosci Ther. 2014 Dec 5. doi: 10.1111/cns.12351. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Adelson PD, Srinivas R, Chang YF, Bell MJ, Kochanek PM. Cerebrovascular response in children following severe traumatic brain injury. Child’s Nervous System. 27(9): 1465-1476, 2011.
  • Arango JI, Deibert CP, Brown SD, Bell M, Dvorchik I, Adelson PD. Posttraumatic seizures in children with severe traumatic brain injury. Child’s Nervous System. 28(11):1925-1929, 2012
  • Adelson PD, Clyde B, Kochanek PM, Wisniewski S, Marion DW, Yonas H. Cerebrovascular response in infants and young children following severe traumatic brain injury: A preliminary report. Pediatric Neurosurgery 26:200-207, 1997.
  • Adelson PD, Nemoto EM, Painter M. The use of near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) in children after traumatic brain injury: A preliminary report: ICPX A Marmarou, R Bullock, et al. (eds). Acta Neurochirurgica Supplementum 71:250-254, 1998.

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