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Programs & Services

Spinal Cord Disorders

Blythedale is a center of excellence for the treatment of children with spinal cord disorders. Our interdisciplinary team specializes in the management of acute spinal cord injury, acute and inflammatory polyneuropathies, and other spinal cord disorders. Blythedale accepts patients with all levels of spinal cord injury, including those who are ventilator dependent.

Following an interdisciplinary evaluation, a comprehensive, integrated, and intensive program of medical, nursing, and therapy management is developed to meet the complex individualized needs of the patient and family. The child’s clinical team works collaboratively to identify developmentally appropriate medical and therapeutic goals. The individualized programs aim to restore function, improve mobility, foster independence in daily activities and self-care, and promote adjustment to disability. Blythedale’s highly specialized treatment approach includes the use of sophisticated assistive technology, environmental modifications, and adaptive equipment to maximize function.

Parents and families play an integral role in their child’s recovery. At Blythedale, parents receive extensive education, caregiver training and support throughout their child’s rehabilitation. In addition, coordinated discharge planning enables children to return home faster. It also provides families with detailed information regarding follow-up care, equipment needs, specialized accommodations and support services to ensure the continuity of care. Well-known for superior outcomes, Blythedale strives to help all of our young patients return to their families, schools and communities.

  • Board-certified pediatricians 24/7, neurologists, and experienced nursing staff (75% R.N., with more than 85% on the Infant and Toddler Unit) with training in bowel/bladder care, wound and skin care, nutritional needs, spasticity and pain management.
  • Full-time specialists in psychiatry and psychology to address emotional, behavioral, developmental and adjustment needs.
  • 24/7 pulmonary and respiratory support (20 full-time pediatric respiratory therapists).
  • Largest hospital-based pediatric therapy department in New York State, with 85 full-time pediatric therapists (physical, occupational, speech pathology and feeding).
  • Full-time child life specialists provide emotional support, pain and anxiety management, and coping strategies, individualized to the patient’s needs.
  • Adaptive equipment clinic on-site, for transition from stretcher to adaptive wheelchair that accommodates ventilator and/or assistive technology, and specially trained seating and mobility specialists.
  • State-of-the-art medical technology including physiologic monitoring equipment, pressure-mapping, environmental control units (ECUs), partial body weight support system, Balance Master, and a Gait Rite.
  • School programming at the Mt. Pleasant Blythedale UFSD, the Hospital’s on-site K-12 public school district, to facilitate continued education during recovery.
  • Unique Day Hospital program for patients who need intensive rehabilitation and/or medical care.

On-Site Services and Support Areas Serving Patients with Spinal Cord Injuries:

  • Pediatric Medicine
  • Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Child Neurology
  • Pediatric Pulmonology
  • Pediatric Orthopaedics
  • Child Psychiatry and Psychology
  • Pediatric Nursing
  • Pediatric Nutrition
  • Pain Management
  • Pediatric Occupational Therapy
  • Pediatric Physical Therapy
  • Pediatric Respiratory Therapy
  • Speech Pathology and Feeding Therapy

  Additional Specialty Support Areas Available:

  • Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology (ENT)
  • Additional consultative specialists as needed
Clinical Support Services
  • Child Life
  • Audiology
  • Radiology
  • Lab Services
  • Pharmacy
  • Social Work/Case Management
  • Assistive Technology
  • On-site Equipment Clinic
  • Patient Advocacy


Patient Stories
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Twins Kassius and Keaton were born in June, 2015, at just 30-weeks gestation
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