Bio

Clinical Focus


  • Anesthesia
  • Pediatric Pain

Academic Appointments


Administrative Appointments


  • Director, Pediatric Anesthesia Resource center (2014 - Present)

Professional Education


  • Internship:Morehouse School of Medicine Office of the Registrar (2004) GA
  • Fellowship:AI Dupont Hospital for Children (2008) DE
  • Board Certification: Pain Medicine, American Board of Pain Medicine (2013)
  • Professional Education:Helms Medical Institute (2015) CA
  • Board Certification: Pediatric Anesthesia, American Board of Anesthesiology (2013)
  • Board Certification: Anesthesia, American Board of Anesthesiology (2008)
  • Residency:Thomas Jefferson Univ Hospital (2007) PA
  • Medical Education:Terna Medical College (1999)

Publications

All Publications


  • Multidisciplinary Pain Management for Pediatric Patients with Acute and Chronic Pain: A Foundational Treatment Approach When Prescribing Opioids. Children (Basel, Switzerland) Wren, A. A., Ross, A. C., D'Souza, G., Almgren, C., Feinstein, A., Marshall, A., Golianu, B. 2019; 6 (2)

    Abstract

    Opioid therapy is the cornerstone of treatment for acute procedural and postoperative pain and is regularly prescribed for severe and debilitating chronic pain conditions. Although beneficial for many patients, opioid therapy may have side effects, limited efficacy, and potential negative outcomes. Multidisciplinary pain management treatments incorporating pharmacological and integrative non-pharmacological therapies have been shown to be effective in acute and chronic pain management for pediatric populations. A multidisciplinary approach can also benefit psychological functioning and quality of life, and may have the potential to reduce reliance on opioids. The aims of this paper are to: (1) provide a brief overview of a multidisciplinary pain management approach for pediatric patients with acute and chronic pain, (2) highlight the mechanisms of action and evidence base of commonly utilized integrative non-pharmacological therapies in pediatric multidisciplinary pain management, and (3) explore the opioid sparing effects of multidisciplinary treatment for pediatric pain.

    View details for PubMedID 30795645

  • Perioperative Management of the Pediatric Patient on Medicinal Marijuana: What Anesthesiologists Should Know. Anesthesia and analgesia Flannery, K. M., D'Souza, G., Agarwal, R. 2019

    Abstract

    In 2018, 29 states allow the use of medicinal marijuana. In these states, minors, with parental permission, are granted access. Use has increased in some states, although there remains a paucity of clear evidence regarding usefulness and dosing. There are 2 Food and Drug Administration-approved synthetic derivatives. One purified compound was just approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and another is undergoing Food and Drug Administration review. This article will review the literature regarding the use of each of these compounds in the literature, with particular attention to data in children. The history, known pharmacology, data from nonmedicinal use, current evidence, and anesthetic considerations will be described.

    View details for DOI 10.1213/ANE.0000000000003956

    View details for PubMedID 30985382

  • Pharmacological Strategies for Decreasing Opioid Therapy and Management of Side Effects from Chronic Use. Children (Basel, Switzerland) D'Souza, G., Wren, A. A., Almgren, C., Ross, A. C., Marshall, A., Golianu, B. 2018; 5 (12)

    Abstract

    As awareness increases about the side effects of opioids and risks of misuse, opioid use and appropriate weaning of opioid therapies have become topics of significant clinical relevance among pediatric populations. Critically ill hospitalized neonates, children, and adolescents routinely receive opioids for analgesia and sedation as part of their hospitalization, for both acute and chronic illnesses. Opioids are frequently administered to manage pain symptoms, reduce anxiety and agitation, and diminish physiological stress responses. Opioids are also regularly prescribed to youth with chronic pain. These medications may be prescribed during the initial phase of a diagnostic workup, during an emergency room visit; as an inpatient, or on an outpatient basis. Following treatment for underlying pain conditions, it can be challenging to appropriately wean and discontinue opioid therapies. Weaning opioid therapy requires special expertise and care to avoid symptoms of increased pain, withdrawal, and agitation. To address this challenge, there have been enhanced efforts to implement opioid-reduction during pharmacological therapies for pediatric pain management. Effective pain management therapies and their outcomes in pediatrics are outside the scope of this paper. The aims of this paper were to: (1) Review the current practice of opioid-reduction during pharmacological therapies; and (2) highlight concrete opioid weaning strategies and management of opioid withdrawal.

    View details for PubMedID 30563157

  • Nusinersen versus Sham Control in Later-Onset Spinal Muscular Atrophy NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE Mercuri, E., Darras, B. T., Chiriboga, C. A., Day, J. W., Campbell, C., Connolly, A. M., Iannaccone, S. T., Kirschner, J., Kuntz, N. L., Saito, K., Shieh, P. B., Tulinius, M., Mazzone, E. S., Montes, J., Bishop, K. M., Yang, Q., Foster, R., Gheuens, S., Bennett, C. F., Farwell, W., Schneider, E., De Vivo, D. C., Finkel, R. S., CHERISH Study Grp 2018; 378 (7): 625–35

    Abstract

    Nusinersen is an antisense oligonucleotide drug that modulates pre-messenger RNA splicing of the survival motor neuron 2 ( SMN2) gene. It has been developed for the treatment of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA).We conducted a multicenter, double-blind, sham-controlled, phase 3 trial of nusinersen in 126 children with SMA who had symptom onset after 6 months of age. The children were randomly assigned, in a 2:1 ratio, to undergo intrathecal administration of nusinersen at a dose of 12 mg (nusinersen group) or a sham procedure (control group) on days 1, 29, 85, and 274. The primary end point was the least-squares mean change from baseline in the Hammersmith Functional Motor Scale-Expanded (HFMSE) score at 15 months of treatment; HFMSE scores range from 0 to 66, with higher scores indicating better motor function. Secondary end points included the percentage of children with a clinically meaningful increase from baseline in the HFMSE score (≥3 points), an outcome that indicates improvement in at least two motor skills.In the prespecified interim analysis, there was a least-squares mean increase from baseline to month 15 in the HFMSE score in the nusinersen group (by 4.0 points) and a least-squares mean decrease in the control group (by -1.9 points), with a significant between-group difference favoring nusinersen (least-squares mean difference in change, 5.9 points; 95% confidence interval, 3.7 to 8.1; P<0.001). This result prompted early termination of the trial. Results of the final analysis were consistent with results of the interim analysis. In the final analysis, 57% of the children in the nusinersen group as compared with 26% in the control group had an increase from baseline to month 15 in the HFMSE score of at least 3 points (P<0.001), and the overall incidence of adverse events was similar in the nusinersen group and the control group (93% and 100%, respectively).Among children with later-onset SMA, those who received nusinersen had significant and clinically meaningful improvement in motor function as compared with those in the control group. (Funded by Biogen and Ionis Pharmaceuticals; CHERISH ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02292537 .).

    View details for PubMedID 29443664

  • Management of a Ventral Cerebrospinal Fluid Leak With a Lumbar Transforaminal Epidural Blood Patch in a Child With Persistent Postdural Puncture Headache: A Case Report. Regional anesthesia and pain medicine D'souza, G., Seidel, F. G., Krane, E. J. 2017; 42 (2): 263-266

    Abstract

    Postdural puncture headache (PDPH) is an uncommon sequel of lumbar puncture in children. When conservative treatment with bed rest, hydration, and caffeine are ineffective, epidural blood patches are recommended and are generally effective. The purpose of this report was to highlight that when lumbar epidural blood patches fail to eliminate PDPH, diagnostic evaluation should be performed and alternative treatment sought.An unusual case is described of an 11-year-old boy with PDPH, which was successfully managed with a ventral (anterior) epidural blood patch and epidural saline infusion after headache and other symptoms failed to resolve after conservative treatment and conventionally performed blood patches.Ineffectiveness of conservative measures and epidural blood patches performed posteriorly to resolve PDPH should lead the physician both to question the diagnosis of PDPH by pursuing radiographic confirmation of a cerebral spinal fluid leak and, furthermore, identification of its location to best direct further therapy.

    View details for DOI 10.1097/AAP.0000000000000562

    View details for PubMedID 28178090

  • Nusinersen versus Sham Control in Infantile-Onset Spinal Muscular Atrophy. The New England journal of medicine Finkel, R. S., Mercuri, E., Darras, B. T., Connolly, A. M., Kuntz, N. L., Kirschner, J., Chiriboga, C. A., Saito, K., Servais, L., Tizzano, E., Topaloglu, H., Tulinius, M., Montes, J., Glanzman, A. M., Bishop, K., Zhong, Z. J., Gheuens, S., Bennett, C. F., Schneider, E., Farwell, W., De Vivo, D. C. 2017; 377 (18): 1723–32

    Abstract

    Spinal muscular atrophy is an autosomal recessive neuromuscular disorder that is caused by an insufficient level of survival motor neuron (SMN) protein. Nusinersen is an antisense oligonucleotide drug that modifies pre-messenger RNA splicing of the SMN2 gene and thus promotes increased production of full-length SMN protein.We conducted a randomized, double-blind, sham-controlled, phase 3 efficacy and safety trial of nusinersen in infants with spinal muscular atrophy. The primary end points were a motor-milestone response (defined according to results on the Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination) and event-free survival (time to death or the use of permanent assisted ventilation). Secondary end points included overall survival and subgroup analyses of event-free survival according to disease duration at screening. Only the first primary end point was tested in a prespecified interim analysis. To control the overall type I error rate at 0.05, a hierarchical testing strategy was used for the second primary end point and the secondary end points in the final analysis.In the interim analysis, a significantly higher percentage of infants in the nusinersen group than in the control group had a motor-milestone response (21 of 51 infants [41%] vs. 0 of 27 [0%], P<0.001), and this result prompted early termination of the trial. In the final analysis, a significantly higher percentage of infants in the nusinersen group than in the control group had a motor-milestone response (37 of 73 infants [51%] vs. 0 of 37 [0%]), and the likelihood of event-free survival was higher in the nusinersen group than in the control group (hazard ratio for death or the use of permanent assisted ventilation, 0.53; P=0.005). The likelihood of overall survival was higher in the nusinersen group than in the control group (hazard ratio for death, 0.37; P=0.004), and infants with a shorter disease duration at screening were more likely than those with a longer disease duration to benefit from nusinersen. The incidence and severity of adverse events were similar in the two groups.Among infants with spinal muscular atrophy, those who received nusinersen were more likely to be alive and have improvements in motor function than those in the control group. Early treatment may be necessary to maximize the benefit of the drug. (Funded by Biogen and Ionis Pharmaceuticals; ENDEAR ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02193074 .).

    View details for DOI 10.1056/NEJMoa1702752

    View details for PubMedID 29091570

  • Acupuncture as an Anesthetic Adjuvant for Pediatric Orthopedic Patients: A Pilot Study and Protocol Description MEDICAL ACUPUNCTURE Golianu, B., Seybold, J., D'Souza, G. 2015; 27 (6): 475–80
  • Use of Cockroft and Gault formula for estimation of creatinine clearance. Anesthesiology D'Souza, G., Viscusi, E. R., Rowlands, J. 2008; 109 (6): 1140–41; author reply 1141–42

    View details for DOI 10.1097/ALN.0b013e31818dd6fe

    View details for PubMedID 19034112