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Pediatric Surgery

Your Child Is in Good Hands

If your child has an illness, injury, or other condition that requires surgery, it’s good to know he or she is in the experienced hands of pediatric surgeons, pediatric anesthesiologists, pediatric nurses, and child -life specialists at Baystate Children’s Hospital — a fully accredited hospital within Baystate Medical Center. We’re specially trained to handle surgical problems in children, which are often very different, can differ from those seen in adults.

Our Children’s Surgery Center has its own admitting, waiting, and recovery rooms designed just for children. Your child will share spaces only with other children — not adults. Our wish is that you stay by your child’s side until he or she goes to sleep before surgery, making the experience less stressful for both of you.

Western Massachusetts’ Only Pediatric & Newborn Intensive Care Units

If your child needs specialized monitoring and care after surgery, he or she may need to spend time in the region’s only pediatric intensive care unit with specially trained intensive care pediatricians and nurses. We also offer the region’s only newborn intensive care unit for premature babies and those who need advanced monitoring.

Surgeries We Perform

We provide complete, skilled surgical care using the newest treatment options to help your child recover from surgery as quickly as possible. For example, minimally invasive surgery (surgeons make tiny incisions and are guided by cameras in laparoscopic, endoscopic, and thoracoscopic procedures) results in less pain and faster healing.

Surgeries we perform include:

  • Abdominal surgery
  • Cancer surgery
  • Chest-wall reconstructions for rib and breastbone problems (pectus excavatum)
  • Head and neck surgery
  • Hernia surgery
  • Neurosurgery
  • Newborn surgery
  • Ovarian tumors surgery
  • Soft tissue surgery
  • Testicular tumors surgery
  • Thoracic surgery – heart,(heart, lung, esophagus, and other organs in chest)
  • Trauma surgery
  • Urologic surgery (– inincluding Deflux injections for ureteral reflux – urine flow problem)
  • Varicoelectomy – (repair of twisted veins in testicles)

Your child’s surgical team includes highly skilled pediatric surgeons, pediatric anesthesiologists ,pediatric nurses, and child life specialists who can help you and your child cope with being in the hospital. Our child life specialists are available on the inpatient units, as well as in the Children’s Surgery Center and Emergency Department.

What to Expect About Your Child’s Surgery

Understanding as much as you can about your child’s surgery and what to expect can help make it easier for you and your child.

Getting Ready for Your Child's Surgery

Tips for Talking with Your Child About Surgery

It’s a good idea to:

  • Know what procedure will be done, how it will be done, and why
  • Share this information with your child, explaining it in a way he or she can understand
  • Tell your child where he or she will be – and where you will be – during the surgery
  • Not promise your child anything unless you’re sure it’s correct

Talk with your child in simple and honest terms. Choose your words carefully, avoiding “scary” words. Think about your facial expressions and tone of voice. If your child thinks you’re upset, he or she will be, too.

Encourage your child to ask questions, and talk about the surgery and hospital stay. This can help your child process the experience and feel more comfortable.

Right Before Surgery

The Registration Department will call you a few days before your child’s surgery date to go over general information with you, including confirming name and address, insurance information, and parent or guardian details.

A pediatric surgical nurse will call you the night before your child’s surgery to give you instructions to help you get ready for the surgery, including:

  • Driving and parking directions
  • What your child can eat and drink (if you don’t follow these instructions, your child’s surgery may be canceled or delayed)
  • When to arrive

We welcome any of your questions. Baystate social workers, financial advisers, or even our chaplain can help, too.

Our Children’s Surgery Center has its own admitting, waiting, and recovery rooms designed just for children. Your child will share spaces only with other children — not adults.

On the Day of Your Child’s Surgery

Every child must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. If the parent or guardian cannot come to the hospital, call the pediatric surgery area at 413-794-5661 in advance of the surgery.

Please be prepared on the day of surgery with the following tips

  • Before leaving home, be sure that the child is bathed and dressed in loose, comfortable clothing.
  • Remove all jewelry, contact lenses, make-up, and nail polish.
  • Glasses and hearing aids may stay on until the last minute.
  • Bring any paperwork your doctor’s office has given to you, and the name and dosage of any medication your child takes.
  • You may also bring any comfort items that your child might like to have, like a blanket, pacifier, or stuffed animal.
  • Make sure you know and inform the nurses of any allergies your child might have.
  • Follow the eating and drinking instructions from the doctor or nurse.
  • We can provide bottles and sippy cups in the recovery room, but if you think your child would rather drink from their own, please bring them with you.
  • Please do not bring other children on the day of surgery.

You can come with your child into the operating room on the day of surgery and stay until your child is asleep. The pediatric anesthesiologist will talk with you before the surgery. This will reduce stress for you and your child.

After Your Child’s Surgery

After your child’s surgery is complete, you’ll be able to see your child in the recovery room. You can even be at your child’s bedside, and be the first person he or she sees when awaking from anesthesia.

Once you’re back at home, a nurse will call you the day after surgery to make sure your child is doing well and answer any of your questions.

If Your Child Needs to Stay in the Hospital

If your child needs to stay in the hospital after surgery, he or she will be in the family-friendly setting at Baystate Children’s Hospital. We offer separate, specially designed inpatient units for infants and children and teens and young adults, and the hospital features a bright and cheery play space filled with toys, video games, an aquarium, and an entertainment center. You’ll also find a rooftop play deck.

If your child needs specialized monitoring and care after surgery, he or she may need to spend time in the region’s only Pediatric Intensive Care Unit with specially trained intensive care pediatricians and nurses. We also offer the region’s only Newborn Intensive Care Unit for premature babies and those who need advanced monitoring.

Our goal is to make your child’s hospital stay as positive and stress-free as possible.

Our Locations