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Pediatric Hypothermia Whole Body Cooling

Whole body hypothermia provides cerebral (brain) protection for newborns affected by hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). This complication occurs when there is a reduced level of oxygen (hypoxia) or blood flow (ischemia) to the baby's brain or body. 

Whole-body cooling places newborns on a water-filled cooling mattress to reduce body temperature to 92°F for three days, which is long enough to interrupt brain injury. After the three days, your baby recovers to a normal body temperature in our neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) with continuous EEG (electroencephalogram) neuromonitoring. Our cooling program follows the National Institute of Health's Neonatal Network protocol, which demonstrates a reduction in death or serious disability for infants who develop serious neonatal encephalopathy within six hours of birth.

Children's Team

Children's Team


Suma Hoffman

Suma Hoffman

Associate Director, Neonatal-Perinatal Fellowship Program
Our Stories

Our Stories

Sadie leans over pastel-colored blanket

Sadie's Story

Sadie is one of hundreds of infants with acute encephalopathy who have received whole-body therapeutic hypothermia at the Children's National neonatal intensive care unit. Whole-body therapeutic hypothermia is offered in the first few hours of life to preserve brain cells and to stave off disability or death.



Neonatal Neurology and Neonatal Neurocritical Care Program

The Neonatal Neurology and Neurocritical Care Program at Children’s National is the only one of its kind in the mid-Atlantic region and a leader in advancing neurologic care to some of our most critically ill newborns.


Whether your infant has arrived prematurely or has a critical illness, the Children’s National Hospital top-ranked team assists in coordinating every service you and your baby need, including consultations, assessments, emergency treatments and continuing care.

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Share your birthday with a child. Celebrate your life, and give a chance to someone who desperately wants to have as many as you.

Share your birthday with a child. Celebrate your life, and give a chance to someone who desperately wants to have as many as you. Make it happen