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UCLA Pediatric Pulmonology


Division of Pediatric Pulmonology expands specialty services

UCLA Division of Pediatric Pulmonology. Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA.

The Division of Pediatric Pulmonology is dedicated to meeting the needs of children with respiratory disorders as well as expanding the knowledge of pulmonary disease in infants, children, and adolescents. Our pediatric pulmonologists provide comprehensive consultation, diagnosis and treatment for such disorders as asthma, cystic fibrosis, pneumonia,Valley Fever, recurrent cough or wheezing, apnea, sleep disorders, chronic lung disease, and those who need devices to help them breathe. The division offers specialized pediatric pulmonary clinics for those patients with asthma, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, cystic fibrosis, neuromuscular disease respiratory disorders, and for those children and adolescents who need mechanical ventilatory support.

"Respiratory issues are among most prevalent problems wesee in children," says Sande Okelo, MD, PhD, Director of UCLA's Pediatric Asthma Center. "Most pediatricpulmonary centers are straining to meet the demand. In response, UCLA is expanding its programs to serve patients who are in need of the best care." The Division of Pediatric Pulmonology combines a multidisciplinary approach, research support and state-of- the-art facilities. "We handle all types of pediatric pulmonary disorders," says Dr. Okelo.

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The division takes a multidisciplinary approach to treatment. In addition to pediatric pulmonologists, UCLA's team includes a range of pediatric specialists as well as social workers, nurses, dietitians, and respiratory therapists who offer support, training and education to patients and their families. The division is already recognized by the California State Newborn Screening Program as a referral specialty clinic with an accredited multidisciplinary team for the care of cystic fibrosis newborn infants. The division clinics is also paneled by CCS for the care of chronic respiratory disorders, including cystic fibrosis and infants/children with chronic respiratory failure.

A Growing Problem

UCLA is bolstering its pediatric pulmonary services in response to an increased population of children with respiratory problems such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, or chronic respiratory failure. Such patients are best treated by pulmonologists specially trained in pediatrics, who are in short supply nationwide. UCLA is one of only a few hospitals in Southern California that has the resources to meet this challenge.

Clinical Research Expertise

Our pediatric pulmonologists are well-published and recognized, both nationally and internationally, for their expertise in a wide-range of pediatric pulmonary disorders that includes asthma, cystic fibrosis, infant apnea, lung transplantation, and chronic respiratory failure (ventilator-dependent).  In addition to having a number of peer-reviewed publications and routinely being presenters at international conferences, their current research projects in pediatric pulmonary disorders are funded by the National Institute of Health (NIH).

Future goals

UCLA is seeking to establish a sleep laboratory focused on children and infants to help meet the pressing demand, which is particularly acute in Southern California where there are few sleep centers with experience and expertise in interpreting pediatric studies. In addition, the Division of Pediatric Pulmonology also plans to establish a specialty clinic for pediatric sleep disorders within the next 2 years.

Conditions treated at UCLA Division of Pediatric Pulmonology. Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA.Diseases/Conditions Treated

  • Asthma
  • Bronchopulmonary dysplasia
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Congenital lung disorders
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Mechanical ventilator-dependent
  • Pneumonia (recurrent, aspiration, etc.)
  • Recurrent or chronic cough/wheezing
  • Respiratory disorders/diseases of prematurity
  • Respiratory failure
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sleep disordered breathing (e.g., snoring, obstructive sleep apnea)
  • Tracheostomy-dependence
  • Ventilation-dependence (including CPAP/BiPAP)

Services Provided

  • Consultative diagnosis and management of disease impacting normal respiratory function
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Pulmonary Function Testing
  • Exercise Testing
  • Sleep studies

Health Insurances Accepted

We accept patients with Medi-Cal, CCS, and/or commercial health insurance.