A photo of Charles Stevenson.

Faculty Neurosurgeon, Division of Pediatric Neurosurgery

Associate Professor, UC Department of Neurosurgery


Board Certified

My Biography & Research


I was first drawn to neurosurgery as a medical student during an elective rotation. It quickly became clear to me that taking care of people with neurological disorders was incredibly challenging and immensely rewarding. I was hooked after the first day of the rotation.

During my neurosurgery residency, I was fortunate to find a mentor in Dr. Noel Tulipan, a pediatric neurosurgeon who was a pioneer in repairing spina bifida defects in fetuses to improve their outcomes following birth. He became a guiding presence in my life and inspired me to dedicate my career to caring for children.

I am board certified in both adult neurosurgery, from the American Board of Neurological Surgery, and in pediatric neurosurgery, from the American Board of Pediatric Neurological Surgery.

As a pediatric neurosurgeon, I specialize in the following conditions and procedures:

  • Brain and spinal tumors
  • Chiari malformations
  • Craniosynostosis
  • Endoscopic and minimally invasive surgery
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Spasticity surgery, including selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) and the implantation of baclofen pumps
  • Spina bifida, including fetal surgery for myelomeningocele
  • Spinal dysraphic defects and all forms of tethered cord syndrome

My philosophy of care is simple — the patient always comes first. I am always happy to take as much time as needed to fully explain a diagnosis and answer all of a family's questions. I try to base all of my recommendations and treatment plans on the straightforward principle that it is what I would want to be done for my own child.

I am the surgical director of the Brain Tumor Center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, and I specialize in the treatment of children with brain and spine tumors. I also serve as a member of the Fetal Care Team, and along with my colleagues in the Fetal Care Center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, I helped create the Fetal Myelomeningocele Surgery Program here in 2011. In addition, I created the Surgical Spasticity Clinic at Cincinnati Children’s, which is a multispecialty program that evaluates and treats patients with cerebral palsy and other conditions who are adversely affected by spasticity in their limbs. I am a member of the American Society of Pediatric Neurosurgeons and a member of the neurosurgical advisory committee of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium.

I am incredibly proud to have been recognized twice with Distinguished Faculty Awards from Cincinnati Children’s: first for my efforts as the surgical director of the Brain Tumor Center and subsequently for my role as part of the multispecialty Trauma Services Team. In addition, I am honored to have been recognized by the Office of Patient and Family Experience at the end of 2019 as the highest-scoring surgeon at Cincinnati Children’s when graded by patients and their families on a hospital-wide survey.

My research is concentrated in two primary areas at present. In the Brain Tumor Center, my colleagues and I are continuously developing novel clinical trials to search for new treatments to improve outcomes for patients with malignant and recurrent brain tumors. In the Fetal Care Center, my partners and I are working to improve surgical techniques for intrauterine closure of myelomeningocele (spina bifida) to make the procedure safer for both mother and child.

When I’m not working, I try to spend as much time as possible with my family. I am a big fan of classic and alternative rock as well as the blues, and I enjoy attending concerts and reading about rock history.

Clinical Interests

Brain tumors; spasticity; Chiari malformations; fetal surgery; neurovascular disorders; minimal access surgery

Research Interests

Neuro-oncology; epilepsy; spasticity

Academic Affiliation

Associate Professor, UC Department of Neurosurgery

Clinical Divisions

Colorectal Disorders, Neurosurgery, Brain Tumor, Fetal Care, Craniofacial Disorders

Research Divisions


My Locations

My Education

MD: Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN, 2001.

Residency: Neurological Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, 2001-08.

Fellowships: Neurosurgical Oncology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, 2004-06; Pediatric Neurosurgery, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH, 2008-09.

Board Certification: Neurological Surgery, American Board of Neurological Surgery, 2013; Pediatric Neurosurgery, American Board of Pediatric Neurological Surgery, 2014.

My Publications

Characterizing temporal genomic heterogeneity in pediatric low-grade gliomas. Lazow, MA; Hoffman, L; Schafer, A; Osorio, DS; Boué, DR; Rush, S; Wright, E; Lane, A; DeWire-Schottmiller, MD; Smolarek, T; et al. Acta Neuropathologica Communications. 2020; 8.

Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma Cells Are Vulnerable to Mitotic Abnormalities Associated with BMI-1 Modulation. Senthil Kumar, S; Sengupta, S; Zhu, X; Mishra, DK; Phoenix, T; Dyer, L; Fuller, C; Stevenson, CB; DeWire, M; Fouladi, M; et al. Molecular cancer research : MCR. 2020; 18:1711-1723.

A phase I/II study of ribociclib following radiation therapy in children with newly diagnosed diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG). DeWire, M; Fuller, C; Hummel, TR; Chow, LM L; Salloum, R; de Blank, P; Pater, L; Lawson, S; Zhu, X; Dexheimer, P; et al. Journal of Neuro-Oncology. 2020; 149:511-522.

Abnormal anisotropic diffusion properties in pediatric myelomeningocele patients treated with fetal surgery: an initial DTI study. Mangano, FT; Stevenson, CB; Nagaraj, U; Conley, A; Yuan, W. Child's Nervous System. 2020; 36:827-833.

Prenatal and postnatal MRI findings in open spinal dysraphism following intrauterine repair via open versus fetoscopic surgical techniques. Nagaraj, UD; Bierbrauer, KS; Stevenson, CB; Peiro, JL; Lim, FY; Habli, MA; Kline-Fath, BM. Prenatal Diagnosis. 2020; 40:49-57.

Cerebrospinal Fluid Shunt Infection: Emerging Paradigms in Pathogenesis that Affect Prevention and Treatment. Simon, TD; Schaffzin, JK; Stevenson, CB; Willebrand, K; Parsek, M; Hoffman, LR. The Journal of Pediatrics. 2019; 206:13-19.

Myelomeningocele Versus Myelocele on Fetal MR Images: Are There Differences in Brain Findings?. Nagaraj, UD; Bierbrauer, KS; Stevenson, CB; Peiro, JL; Lim, F; Zhang, B; Kline-Fath, BM. American Journal of Roentgenology. 2018; 211:1376-1380.

Spinal Imaging Findings of Open Spinal Dysraphisms on Fetal and Postnatal MRI. Nagaraj, UD; Bierbrauer, KS; Stevenson, CB; Peiro, JL; Lim, FY; Zhang, B; Kline-Fath, BM. American Journal of Neuroradiology. 2018; 39:1947-1952.

Frontoethmoidal encephalocele: a pediatric airway challenge. Geddam, LM; Mahmoud, MA; Pan, BS; Stevenson, CB; Kandil, AI. Canadian Journal of Anesthesia / Journal canadien d'anesthésie. 2018; 65:208-209.

Characterizing temporal genomic heterogeneity in pediatric high-grade gliomas. Salloum, R; McConechy, MK; Mikael, LG; Fuller, C; Drissi, R; DeWire, M; Nikbakht, H; De Jay, N; Yang, X; Boue, D; et al. Acta Neuropathologica Communications. 2017; 5.