Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

Critically ill and premature neonates require neonatal intensive care with round-the-clock monitoring to ensure best outcome and recovery. Discover the neonatal services provided by our expert team of neonatologists and pediatrician’s at the American Hospital.

American Hospital provides babies and parents with state-of-the-art level 3 neonatal intensive care facilities for all types of neonatal problems.

Often newborn infants who are ill or those born premature will require neonatal intensive care treatment after birth. Though pediatricians are able to take care of the majority of health related problems in infants, “Neonatologist” who is competent, capable and trained in providing care for high-risk babies is required, and thus the need for Neonatal intensive Care Unit.

Neonatology is a pediatric subspecialty and is practiced in the neonatal intensive care unit. Common health issues that could require the medical help of a neonatologist are premature birth, intrauterine growth restriction, sepsis, low birth weight, congenital defects, birth asphyxia, sick babies needing cardio-respiratory support, babies needing surgery and post-operative care and many more. Neonatologists often provide medical care if health risks are posed after the birth of the baby, however, in cases where an infant’s condition has been detected before birth, a neonatologist may be involved in consultation along with an obstetrician to determine how to go about a pregnancy in order to ensure the baby’s best care.

Our expert team, lead by Dr Sridhar Ramaiah Consultant Neonatologist ( MD, FRCPCH, Neonatal CCT, UK) and Dr Osama Hamud ( FRCPCH Neonatal CCT UK) along with experienced hospitalists and NICU nurses will take care of babies in our ‘state of the art’ cubicle based NICU. When needed, they will meet with you even before the baby is born (antenatally) for the parental discussions as appropriate. You will get personalized care for you and your baby in our NICU.

While caring for your baby, we are focused on delivering high-quality neonatal intensive care with compassion, dedication, and in a family-centric supportive environment. Neonatologists at the NICU American Hospital Dubai are equipped with the most advanced technology and together with their highly skilled expertise they provide all the necessary intensive care treatment for your baby when needed, should the need arise immediately in the hospital.

Our expert team is available 24 hours a day, who work in close collaboration with experts from various pediatric sub-specialties, to ensure coordinated care for your baby which is focused on the high quality of life. When you have scheduled a pre-birth visit at American Hospital, you can discuss with neonatology experts, the expected care for your baby, and tour the facility where your baby will stay. Your neonatologists will address all your queries and concerns.

Our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit is equipped with all the life-saving facilities designed to look after complex medical issues of babies born at all gestations(23+0 weeks and above gestations). This includes facilities for the post-operative surgical management.

Neonatal Issues That We Treat:

Our dedicated NICU expert team works relentlessly to manage high risk neonates including prematurely born infants and new-borns with complex problems. We address a range of both trivial and complex issues, such as:

Premature birth

• When babies are born prematurely, it’s a challenging time for all.
• Incidence of preterm birth around the world is around 10%
• Around 45% of all admission to NICU at American hospital is preterm births.
• Around 50% of these preterm admissions are <34 weeks at birth
• At American Hospital NICU, babies born at all gestations including 23+0 weeks are managed in-house in the NICU.

• Preterm babies need special management expertise and skills which is provided in the level 3 NICU at American hospital.
• These babies specially if born below 32 weeks would need breathing support ( CPAP/Ventilations) for respiratory distress syndrome and treatment with surfactant ( A medication given directly to the lungs) to improve lung status. We also offer LISA technique (non-invasive surfactant administration) to babies to enhance best outcomes.
• Eligible babies go through screening protocol including head ultrasound, ECHO (heart scan) ROP (Screening of eyes) and provided with developmental care interventions with a view to provide the best outcomes for the baby in the future.
• Babies are generally discharged when they reach around 2kg and 36-37 weeks corrected gestation and are independently managing feeds.

Term babies needing admission

It is not uncommon that term babies get admitted for various reasons:
• Most common reason is Transient Tachypnoea of Newborn (Short lasting breathing difficulty) secondary to wet lungs. Usually improves in couple of days with non invasive breathing support
• Neonatal infection: This is a common problem in babies and these babies need antibiotics to cover for infection. If treated early – improves without significant sequelae.
• Neonatal Jaundice; very common neonatal problem. This is often managed in American Hospital at bedside in the OB ward. Sometimes these babies need admission to NICU for intensive phototherapy. Very rarely they need exchange blood transfusion which is offerred in NICU
• Failure to thrive/intrauterine growth retardation: Babies unable to grow appropriately in pregnancy are admitted to the intensive care for appropriate support. They often need thermal care, sugar monitoring and nutritional supplementation in the form of total parenteral nutrition via central line.

Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (Therapeutic Hypothermia Protocol)

• Management of hypoxic brain injuries – Unfortunately occasionally some of the term babies suffer a hypoxic brain injury at birth. The key in this situation is to provide a therapeutic cooling protocol soon after birth which is available in NICU with continuous cerebral function monitoring. These babies need MRI scan and EEG which is available in the hospital. These babies also need inputs from physiotherapy, occupational therapy and developmental care which are provided here in NICU.

Surgical Services

• Surgery for newborns: Hospital has a fantastic neonatal surgical service 24/7, led by Dr Baath UK trained Paediatric surgeon. Babies needing surgeries are managed in the NICU for postoperative intensive care management.

Other Neonatal Conditions

• Babies needing chest drain for pleural effusion, drainage of pneumothorax are managed in NICU.
• Babies with hydrocephalous (Excessive fluid collection in the skull) are managed with lumbar punctures, and or ventricular tap. These babies need an MRI scan of the brain. Should the surgery be needed pediatric neurosurgeon is available in the hospital.
• Other diagnostic procedures- EEG, CFM, ECHO, US scans, contrast studies, CT, MRI are all offered in the American hospital for babies
• Other common problems managed include – neonatal jaundice, neonatal anemia, neonatal sepsis, neonatal stroke, neonatal congenital malformations, and those needing surgeries.

Programs and Services:

We recognize that every baby is born with unique needs. Through our comprehensive neonatology programs and services provided in the NICU, we suggest a customized care plan that matches the needs of each child as well as their family. Our spectrum of child care services include

• Neonatal ventilation – including high-frequency ventilation and nitric oxide therapy.
• Central line/umbilical lines/invasive arterial monitoring
• Lumbar puncture
• Chest drain
• Ventricular tap
• Abdominal drain
• Total Parenteral nutrition
• Whole-body hypothermia therapy for babies suffering from brain damage due to inadequate supply of oxygen to the body
• Neonatal EEG, Amplitude integrated EEG, MRI, CT, and US head services
• Neonatal ECHO
• Neonatal surgical facilities
• Paediatric Neurosurgery, Paediatric Respiratory, Paediatric surgery, Paediatric Gastroenterology, Paediatric Endocrinology, Paediatric Neurology, Paediatric
cardiology, Paediatric anesthetic services

• Managing everyday care of a new-born
• Comprehensive neonatal follow-up in high risk neonatal follow-up clinic- Every Tuesday
• Family-centered support and care
• Neonatal-specific skin and wound care services

The bottom line is: whether it’s prenatal baby care or care after birth, our experienced neonatal team led by neonatologists is ready to help. We are proud to be one of the nation’s leading hospitals for neonatology and child health care. If you have any query regarding a reputable hospital for premature baby care a world-class neonatology hospital with the best neonatologists in Dubai, get in touch with our Customer Support Staff at +971 43775500.

Book an Appointment:

If you would like to come to visit our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or see our Neonatologist, you can get in touch with us through the booking form provided on our website. American Hospital strives to provide its patients with excellent neonatal intensive care. If you decide to choose American Hospital, we can guarantee that our board-certified doctors will surely provide you with the best healthcare service in Dubai.

Doctors Panel of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

Lesley Steyn

Lactation Consultant

Afrikaans, English

Osama Ibrahim Hamud

Consultant Neonatologist

Arabic, English

Roba Al Koko

Specialist Pediatrician

Arabic, English

Rocky Sonale

Specialist Pediatrics and Neonatology

English, Hindi, Marathi

Shumail Ahmad Malik

Specialist Pediatrician and Neonatologist

Arabic, English, Hindi, Russian, Urdu

Sridhar M Ramaiah

Consultant Neonatologist

English, Hindi, Kannada, Telugu

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