Dr. Charles Schleien: Doctor saves children in cardiac arrest

By Tammy Scileppi

Dr. Charles Schleien, who grew up in Flushing, has dedicated his career to helping others. In particular, he has a long history of doing and supporting research for children.

Over the course of his career, he has been a leader in the areas of cardiopulmonary and brain resuscitation, creating new protocols and helping to spread the word about advancements in the field. In the 1980s, while he was assisant director of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Johns Hopkins University, Schleien developed the first model to study cardiopulmonary resuscitation in infants and children. His work in CPR, as well as in brain resuscitation, has been incorporated into protocols for the American Heart Association and the International Liaison Committee for Resuscitation.

“My major research focus relates to the resuscitation of children after cardiac arrest,” he said. “I have been involved with the study of brain resuscitation since my fellowship at Johns Hopkins in the 1980s.”

His career since his time at Johns Hopkins has taken him to such institutions as the University of Miami, where he led a major research effort in brain resuscitation, and Columbia University, where he was director of the Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital. As a member of the American Heart Association’s Emergency Cardiovascular Committee, Schleien played a major role in formulating international pediatric guidelines in CPR.

He is also active in getting what he has learned out to his medical colleagues, serving as an editor on the “Golden Hour” handbook, which deals with the immediate care of critically ill children in emergency departments, and on the “Rogers Textbook of Critical Care Medicine.” His professional affiliations include memberships in the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Society of Anesthesiologists and the Society of Critical Care Medicine.

As chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at Cohen Children’s Medical Center of North Shore-LIJ Health System in New Hyde Park, as well as professor of pediatrics at the Hofstra/North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine in Hempstead, he continues to support major pediatric research in both immunologic disease and cancer research.

He now lives in New Rochelle and has two sons, Eric, 27, who is a state representative in New Hampshire and a value investor, and Zach, 24, a graduate student at Syracuse University and an entrepreneur.

In the elder Schleien’s spare time, he plays golf and tennis, enjoys photography and travels whenever he can, with recent trips to Southeast Asia, India and Italy.