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WHAT IS A NEURO-ICU?




Neurological Intensive Care is one of the newest and fastest-growing specialties in medicine today. The first academic Neuro-ICUs in the United States were established in the early 1980's. At the present time, there are approximately 25 academic neuro-ICUs directed by full-time staff in North America, and this number is growing rapidly. Many more specialized neurological ICUs exist in large proprietary hospitals throughout the country; their primary focus is on neurosurgical postoperative care. The Columbia-Presbyterian Division of Critical Care Neurology was founded in 1983 by Dr. Matthew E. Fink, making it one of the oldest programs in the United States. Neuro-ICUs are unique in that they bring together specially-trained physicians and nurses and advanced technology, all focused on treating life-threatening neurological diseases. Neurological diseases tend to be complex and relatively uncommon, and are best treated by specialists that have experience in applying neuroimaging and critical care techniques to the specific needs of neurological patients. Another major advantage to care in a neuro-ICU is the constant observation and immediacy of action that is required to detect and treat neurological deterioration. Constant surveillance by neuro-nurses, and the immediate availability of neuroimaging, on-call physicians, and specialized interventions, make it possible to act immediately to correct or reverse worsening medical conditions that might otherwise lead to permanent brain damage.

neuro icu team columbia university

To summarize, a Neuro-ICU brings together specially trained personnel, sophisticated monitoring techniques, and specialized treatment modalities in a 24-hour monitored setting, all with the single goal of improving outcomes of patients with neurological diseases. Specialized Neuro-ICU Treatment and Monitoring Techniques.

Advanced monitoring techniques used in neuro-ICUs allow the identification of critical problems before permanent neurologic injury occurs. A neuro-ICU also offers many specialized therapeutic options for patients with serious neurologic illness. Therefore, the management of such patients in a neuro-ICU is essential towards in achieving a favorable prognosis. The following is a list of techniques which are unique to the environment of a neurologic intensive care unit.

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Affiliated with New York-Presbyterian Hospital || Last updated: August 27, 2014 |
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