Skip to main content
The Women's and Children's Hospital is located on the traditional lands for the Kaurna people, and we respect their spiritual relationship with their Country. We also acknowledge that the Kaurna people are the custodians of the Adelaide region, and that their cultural and heritage beliefs are still as important to the living Kaurna people today.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website may contain images, voices and names of people who have passed away.

Brain, Spine and Nerve Surgery

The Neurosurgery Department is the major provider of neurosurgery services to children 0-17 years of age within South Australia, NT, western NSW and wester Victoria.

The Neurosurgery Department is the major provider of paediatric neurosurgery services within South Australia. Our patients are 0-17 years of age and may live in South Australia, Northern Territory, Western New South Wales and Western Victoria.

We look after children with neurological conditions they were born with or later acquired including:

  • Hydrocephalus
  • Head injury
  • Tumours of the Central Nervous System
  • Vascular disorders (arteriovenous malformations (AVM), aneurysms, cavernomas, Moya Moya disease, Vein of Galen malformations)
  • Spinal dysraphism
  • Chiari Malformation
  • Intracranial haemorrhage
  • Craniofacial deformities

How to access this service

For emergency assistance, your child should be brought to the WCH Emergency Department for assessment.

If necessary a referral will be made to the Neurosurgical team.

In rural or remote areas, it may be wise to be seen by your local doctor or local emergency department first. Your doctor will consult with the Neurosurgical team for advice or to arrange for your child to be brought to the WCH.

Each child is clinically assessed and appropriate investigations (such as CT and MRI scans) will be arranged if required. A plan is then discussed with you and your child to best manage their particular problem.


Elective surgery and outpatient review is undertaken during normal working hours. For emergency care, the WCH Paediatric Emergency Department is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. A member of the Neurosurgical Unit can be contacted by the Emergency Department or local doctor as required.


Level 1, Zone B

Further information

Neurosurgical procedures include:
  • Ventricular shunt insertion/revision
  • Craniotomy
  • Brain and spinal tumour resection
  • Craniocervical decompression
  • Untethering of spinal cord
  • Endoscopic Third Ventriculostomy
  • Skull base surgery
  • Epilepsy surgery
  • Vagal Nerve Stimulator insertion
  • Arteriovenous malformation treatment: surgery, endovascular and radiosurgery
  • Treatment of aneurysms (surgical and endovascular treatment)
  • Cerebral revascularisation for Moya Moya disease
  • Treatment of Vein of Galen malformation
  • Trauma surgery
  • Peripheral nerve surgery
  • Combined craniofacial and neurosurgical procedures
  • Intrathecal baclofen insertion



  • (08) 8161 7000 – Switchboard will contact the Emergency Department or on-call Neurosurgeon in emergencies
  • (08) 8161 7230 – Department Administrative Assistant


(08) 8161 7057


Mailing address

Department of Neurosurgery
Level 2, Good Friday Building
Women's and Children's Hospital
72 King William Road
North Adelaide
South Australia 5006


Paediatric Neurosurgeons

  • Mr Stephen Santoreneos, Unit Head
  • A/Professor Amal Abou-Hamden, Senior Consultant
  • Dr Xenia Doorenbosch, Senior Consultant
  • Dr Alistair Jukes, Consultant

The WCH Paediatric Neurosurgery Service is a multidisciplinary team also consisting of:

  • Jordana Thomson, Nurse Consultant
  • Lisa Salisbury, Outpatient Clinic Enrolled Nurse
  • Registrar and Resident Medical Officer (RMO)
  • Research Assistant
  • Administration Assistant
  • Other Allied Health Professionals:
    • Social Work
    • Physiotherapist
    • Occupational Therapist
    • Speech Pathologist
    • Dietician

Neuropsychology, general psychiatric and psychological services are accessed via the Department of Psychological Medicine.

The Neurosurgery Service works closely with other units including Paediatric Neurology, Paediatric Rehabilitation and Cleft and Craniofacial SA.

For Health Professionals

For urgent referrals, contact the Neurosurgery Medical Officer via WCH switchboard (08) 8161 7000.

Outpatient appointments to Neurosurgery require a referral letter. Clearly mark for referral to Neurosurgery Outpatient’s Department and fax to: (08) 8161 6246.

Please indicate if an interpreter is needed.

Appointment details will be forwarded on receipt of the referral.