Neurocritical Care Conditions

The Neurocritical Care Center at North Shore-LIJ Health System's Cushing Neuroscience Institute provides expert neurocritical care via our neurosurgical intensive care unit (ICU) for patients with a variety of neurological conditions such as:

  • Brain aneurysms Brain aneurysms form when the wall of a blood vessel in the brain weakens, forming a thin and potentially unstable sack. Brain aneurysms can be ruptured or unruptured. Ruptured brain aneurysms are known as subarachnoid hemorrhages. This type of brain aneurysm is an acute, life-threatening neurosurgical emergency. Unruptured brain aneurysms are those found prior to a subarachnoid hemorrhage. This type of brain aneurysm can be found on CT or MRI scans for unrelated neurological issues. Brain aneurysm causes are linked to hypertension, smoking, alcohol use (binge drinking, in particular), family history, and certain inherited disorders.
  • Brain tumors There are various types of benign and malignant brain tumors, including astrocytomas, meningiomas, pituitary gland tumors and metatastic (malignant) tumors. Symptoms of brain tumors may include: headache, vomiting, nausea, personality changes, irritability, drowsiness, depression, decreased cardiac and respiratory function and altered mental status.
  • Normal pressure hydrocephalus A condition in which there is too much cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the ventricles of the brain. This occurs when the natural system for draining and absorbing extra CSF does not work right. The ventricles enlarge to accommodate the extra fluid and then press on different parts of the brain which can result in certain symptoms. Normal pressure hydrocephalus normally occurs in older adults and means that the cerebrospinal fluid builds up slowly over time.
  • Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) DBS is a surgical treatment that implants a brain pacemaker device that sends electrical impulses to specific parts of the brain. Deep Brain Stimulation has provided therapeutic benefits for movement and affective disorders that have been otherwise resistant to treatment, such as chronic pain, Parkinson's disease and tremor.
  • Skull base surgery This type of surgery can be one of the most difficult types of surgery because it is performed in one of the most complex areas of the body where many nerves and blood vessels intertwine. Skull base surgery is performed as a treatment for tumors and other diseases and disorders affecting the skull base.
  • Spine surgery Includes a variety of minimally invasive and open spine surgery procedures to correct or alleviate many neurological and pain disorders and diseases.
  • Stroke There are two types of strokes. An ischemic stroke, the most common type, is caused by a blocked blood vessel. A hemorrhagic stroke is caused by a burst in a blood vessel near or in the brain. Symptoms of stroke can include:
    • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
    • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
    • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
    • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
    • Sudden severe headache with no known cause

To contact the Neurocritical Care Center:
Email us at neuro@nshs.edu or call us at (516) 562-3590.