• Helping the Sickest Babies, Striving to Prevent Preterm Birth

    Robby Dumford was born with a life-threatening condition called congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH). His life was saved thanks to major surgery the day he was born.

    Born 12 weeks early and barely more than two pounds, Mia received life-saving treatment from Cincinnati Children’s to help her overcome a devastating and often deadly bowel disease.

    The Mauncy family was able to take home three healthy triplets thanks to high-tech surgery that corrected a dangerous blood flow problem while the babies were still in the womb.

    These are just some of the many successes from our neonatology program, one of the biggest and most sophisticated of its kind in the country. Our program was ranked No. 3 in the nation in the 2014-15 list of Best Children’s Hospitals published by U.S. News & World Report.

    We provide care to more than 18,000 newborns born per year at a dozen hospitals in and near Cincinnati. We also care for more than 700 critically ill infants a year at three neonatal intensive care units. We support the tiniest preterm infants and we provide advanced surgical care to newborns with the rarest, most complex birth defects.

    Our Division of Neonatology is part of the Perinatal Institute at Cincinnati Children’s, which also includes our Divisions of Perinatal Biology, Reproductive Sciences, Pulmonary Biology, Developmental Biology and the Cincinnati Fetal Center.

    “We provide outstanding clinical care to newborns with complex conditions, but we do even more,” says James Greenberg, MD,  co-director of the Perinatal Institute. “We conduct important research to determine the causes of preterm birth and we are deeply involved in our community with intensive programs to improve prenatal care and reduce preterm births.”

    Why We Stand Out

    • Our regional newborn care system is unique in the United States. By staffing all of the major birthing centers in Greater Cincinnati, we get a bird’s-eye view of the care provided to an entire community of newborns and we can introduce innovations at a wider scale than most other neonatology programs.
    • We are national and international leaders in developmental and reproductive research. Two decades ago, our studies played a major role in developing artificial surfactant, which has since saved thousands of preterm infants born with underdeveloped lungs. Our continuing research explores the many genetic and molecular factors that can derail healthy fetal development and set the stage for adult diseases.
    • Our Center for Prevention of Preterm Birth leads a wide range of projects to reduce the stubbornly high numbers of children born too early. Our work includes studying genetic factors that may explain why some women are more likely to go into early labor to developing programs that work one-on-one with disadvantaged women to make sure they get the prenatal care they need.
    • Our new Familial Preterm Birth Clinic helps women at high risk of preterm delivery with preconception counseling, early pregnancy planning and other strategies to prevent early labor and premature birth.

    “We have a culture of collaboration that brings physicians from various disciplines into teams with nurses, nutritionists, pharmacists, therapists and other specialty staff,” Greenberg says. “This culture also helps us use our research work to improve patient care.”