Collaboration Is Key in Pediatric Urology and Nephrology Centers’ Success

Team approach to kidney, bladder, genitourinary problems

Urological malformations in newborns are among the most complicated urological cases. Collaboration between urology and nephrology experts is imperative to successful outcomes.

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From complex to more routine conditions, such as kidney stones, Cleveland Clinic Children’s Center for Pediatric Urology and the Center for Pediatric Nephrology work together to develop treatment plans for all medical and surgical needs.

“It’s certainly not uncommon for a patient to have both medical and surgical issues, and that’s why we work as a team ‒ to optimize treatment,” says pediatric urologist Audrey Rhee, MD, Center Director for Pediatric Urology.

Charles Kwon, MD, Head, Center for Pediatric Nephrology, notes, “Newborn patients are a vulnerable population, but we’ve been able to provide dialysis and resuscitate newborns who are extremely ill and then facilitate moving them toward transplant.”

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Unique qualifications

Both centers coordinate schedules to co-staff Cleveland Clinic regional locations, giving patients access to urology and nephrology expertise and a cohesive care experience. The centers are outstanding in their own individual ranks and is the only northern Ohio program with both a dedicated outpatient pediatric dialysis unit ‒ which has full accreditation ‒ and a pediatric kidney transplant program. Cleveland Clinic Children’s is consistently rated among the “Best Children’s Hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report.

The specialists in the Center for Pediatric Nephrology and the Center for Pediatric Urology tap into the extensive resources of Cleveland Clinic Children’s, including maternal-fetal medicine specialists and neonatologists, pediatric radiologists, child life specialists and pediatric nurse practitioners.  The Centers offer combined nephrology and urology prenatal consults. What is also unique about the pediatric nephrology-urology relationship is that there is a seamless transition from pediatrics to adult care provided at Cleveland Clinic.  It is always patients first, no matter the age.

“Any pediatric process, whether it’s minor or major from a medical standpoint, is always major to that family. There’s a huge level of sensitivity in pediatrics that I think you need,” says Dr. Rhee. The pediatric nephrology team is comprised of Charles Kwon, MD, Katherine Dell, MD, and Raed Bou Matar, MD.  They are supported by their APP, Allison Schoch.

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The pediatric urology team consists of Dr. Rhee and Jeffrey Donohoe, MD, as well as their APPs are Rebecca Cesa and Kimberly Slocombe.

To refer pediatric urology or nephrology patients to Cleveland Clinic Children’s, call 855.REFER.123.