The Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology provides the highest level of evidence-based care, offering state-of-the-art treatment for patients with cerebrovascular disorders of all levels of complexity. Fellowship-trained vascular neurologists provide acute stroke care, routinely assessing patients for intravenous thrombolysis and/or endovascular interventions. 

Our faculty members collaborate with physicians from the Departments of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Emergency Medicine, Neurosurgery and Surgery to provide the most comprehensive, evidence-based stroke care available.    

VCU Health’s annual Retreat & Refresh Stroke Camp works in partnership with the United Stroke Alliance and Sheltering Arms Institute to offer unique weekend retreats for stroke survivors and their caregivers, providing respite and support in facing the challenges of life following stroke. This annual camp experience is offered each Fall during the past five years, can enroll up to 40 participants, and relies on community support to supplement that from clinical operations.

The Camp Experience for Survivors and Caregivers Includes:

  • Peer-to-peer mentorship and support network 
    building
  • Educational breakout sessions for both survivors and 
    caregivers
  • Exercise rehabilitation to improve survivor motor skills
  • Speech and music therapy sessions
  • Training for caregivers in handling isolation and self-care
  • Group activities that inspire creativity
  • Other components of the camp curriculum provided 
    by the United Stroke Alliance

For questions about the stroke camp or to attend, please contact Stacie Stevens at stacie.stevens@vcuhealth.org. 

The VCU Stroke Center, Virginia’s first Comprehensive Stroke Center certified by the Joint Commission and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, serves as a major tertiary referral center for patients in the commonwealth. Stroke specialists are available for consultations 24/7, and remote patients have access to TeleStroke, an online consultation service. The center has received the highest levels of recognition from the AHA/ASA every year since 2011.

More than one-third of stroke patients admitted to VCU Medical Center are transferred from other hospitals. This reflects our depth of expertise and leading-edge care. The hallmark of VCU Health Comprehensive Stroke Center is providing advanced care for both routine and complex stroke patients, including:

  • Cerebral aneurysm
  • Extracranial and intracranial cerebrovascular disease
  • Intracerebral hemorrhage
  • Ischemic stroke
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage

What Sets Our Stroke Care Apart from Others?  

VCU Health uses an innovative hybrid operating room endovascular suite, a unique hybrid operating room that allows for the use of traditional neurosurgical techniques in combination with endovascular (minimally invasive) treatments. This advanced suite utilizes cutting-edge imaging technology for improved outcomes. In addition, our Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit is located in the Critical Care Hospital so patients receive the highest level of care.

  • Advanced neuro imaging, multimodal CT perfusion and angiography in evaluation
  • First in Virginia to use liquid copolymer in treatment of cerebral aneurysm.

We continue to be a leader in stroke education and research, with National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and industry-sponsored grants. Our expert team doesn’t just treat your stroke, we find out why the stroke occurred. Our goal is to eliminate risk factors we can control to diminish the risk of another stroke. Additionally, some of our patients participate in the latest clinical trials as we discover groundbreaking new ideas and innovative treatments to reduce the risk of stroke. Past and current clinical stroke studies include:

  • New transdermal pro-drug with potential anti-inflammatory impact in acute ischemic stroke
  • Newer treatments for cerebral aneurysm, vasospasm in subarachnoid hemorrhage and minimally invasive neurosurgery plus IV-TPA in intracerebral hemorrhage
  • Pre-hospital ambulance stroke evaluation by telemedicine
  • Treatment of embolic stroke of unknown source (ESUS)
  • Virginia Women’s Stroke Prevention Initiative

Vascular and Critical Care Neurology Fellowship

In addition to providing top-of-the-line patient care, our faculty are involved in teaching and guiding medical students and residents. Learners gain knowledge and develop skills in prevention, treatment and recovery for patients with all types of cerebrovascular disease.

Certified by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, our one-year vascular neurology fellowship provides comprehensive training in the inpatient and outpatient management of cerebrovascular disorders. Areas of training include neuroimaging, neurocritical care, acute stroke evaluation, assessment for stroke intervention and outpatient stroke prevention. Fellows also have ample opportunity to participate in research and ongoing clinical trials.  

About the Chief

VCUSOM Message from the Chief - About the Chief

About the Chief

Kerstin Bettermann, MD, Ph.D., is Professor of Neurology and Neurobehavioral Sciences and an expert in Vascular Neurology. She has trained in neurology, psychiatry, neurophysiology and vascular neurology at the University of Heidelberg, Munich and Duesseldorf in Germany and at Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Dr. Bettermann has expertise in acute stroke care, telestroke, stroke recovery and prevention. Additionally, she has a special interest in the treatment of cerebral small vessel disease such as amyloid angiopathy, CADASIL, and vascular dementia. 

Dr. Bettermann’s research is focused on acute stroke trials, the relationship between stroke and diabetes, cerebral small vessel disease and vascular dementia. She conducts clinical stroke and vascular dementia related research studies, as well as bench research.

Kerstin Bettermann, M.D.

Kerstin Bettermann, M.D.

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology Chief

Kerstin Bettermann, M.D.

Kerstin Bettermann, M.D.

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology Chief

Department of Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: Kerstin.Bettermann@vcuhealth.org

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Maha Alattar, M.D.

Maha Alattar, M.D.

Associate Professor and Medical Director, Sleep Center

Maha Alattar, M.D.

Maha Alattar, M.D.

Associate Professor and Medical Director, Sleep Center

Department of Neurology

Divisions: Adult Neurology, Sleep Medicine, Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: Maha.Alattar@vcuhealth.org

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Karissa C. Arthur, M.D.

Karissa C. Arthur, M.D.

Assistant Professor

Karissa C. Arthur, M.D.

Karissa C. Arthur, M.D.

Assistant Professor

Department of Neurology

Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Email: Karissa.Arthur@vcuhealth.org

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Joy Cannon, FNP

Joy Cannon, FNP

Adult Neurology Inpatient APP Lead

Joy Cannon, FNP

Joy Cannon, FNP

Adult Neurology Inpatient APP Lead

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care

Email: Joy.Cannon@vcuhealth.org

Jamie Carlton, MS, AGACNP-BC, SCRN

Jamie Carlton, MS, AGACNP-BC, SCRN

Nurse Practitioner

Jamie Carlton, MS, AGACNP-BC, SCRN

Jamie Carlton, MS, AGACNP-BC, SCRN

Nurse Practitioner

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: Jamie.Carlton@vcuhealth.org

Warren L. Felton III, M.D.

Warren L. Felton III, M.D.

Professor, Division of Neuro-ophthalmology Chief Medical Director, Credentialing Committee

Warren L. Felton III, M.D.

Warren L. Felton III, M.D.

Professor, Division of Neuro-ophthalmology Chief Medical Director, Credentialing Committee

Department of Neurology

Medical Director, Credentialing Committee
Professor, Neuro-Ophthalmology
Divisions: Adult Neurology, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Vascular Neurology, Multiple Sclerosis

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: warren.feltoniii@vcuhealth.org

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Daniel Falcao, D.O.

Daniel Falcao, D.O.

Associate Professor and Interim Medical Director, VCU Comprehensive Stroke Center

Daniel Falcao, D.O.

Daniel Falcao, D.O.

Associate Professor and Interim Medical Director, VCU Comprehensive Stroke Center

Department of Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: daniel.falcao@vcuhealth.org

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Travis Gatesman, Pharm.D

Travis Gatesman, Pharm.D

Affiliate Associate Professor

Travis Gatesman, Pharm.D

Travis Gatesman, Pharm.D

Affiliate Associate Professor

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: travis.gatesman@vcuhealth.org

Taylor Haight, M.D.

Taylor Haight, M.D.

Assistant Professor, Associate Program Director, Medical Education

Taylor Haight, M.D.

Taylor Haight, M.D.

Assistant Professor, Associate Program Director, Medical Education

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: 804-828-9350

Fax: 804-827-1744

Email: Taylor.Haight@vcuhealth.org

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Kelly Jernigan, FNP

Kelly Jernigan, FNP

Nurse Practitioner

Kelly Jernigan, FNP

Kelly Jernigan, FNP

Nurse Practitioner

Department of Neurology

Division of Multiple Sclerosis and General Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: Kelly.Jernigan@vcuhealth.org

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Jessica M. Johns, M.D.

Jessica M. Johns, M.D.

Assistant Professor Neurointensivist

Jessica M. Johns, M.D.

Jessica M. Johns, M.D.

Assistant Professor Neurointensivist

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Email: Jessica.Johns@vcuhealth.org

Shraddha Mainali, M.D.

Shraddha Mainali, M.D.

Associate Professor Neurointensivist

Shraddha Mainali, M.D.

Shraddha Mainali, M.D.

Associate Professor Neurointensivist

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Email: Shraddha.Mainali@vcuhealth.org

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John Mannino, NP

John Mannino, NP

Nurse Practitioner, Vascular APP

John Mannino, NP

John Mannino, NP

Nurse Practitioner, Vascular APP

Neurology

Email: John.Mannino@vcuhealth.org

Ram Saha, M.D.

Ram Saha, M.D.

Assistant Professor

Ram Saha, M.D.

Ram Saha, M.D.

Assistant Professor

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: 804-628-2820

Fax: 804-827-1744

Email: Ram.Saha@vcuhealth.org

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Stacie C. Stevens, FNP, Ph.D.

Stacie C. Stevens, FNP, Ph.D.

Program Coordinator

Stacie C. Stevens, FNP, Ph.D.

Stacie C. Stevens, FNP, Ph.D.

Program Coordinator

Comprehensive Stroke Center

Division of Vascular and Critical Care Neurology

Phone: (804) 828-7929

Email: stacie.stevens@vcuhealth.org

Georgene Wood, FNP

Georgene Wood, FNP

Adult Neurology Outpatient APP Lead

Georgene Wood, FNP

Georgene Wood, FNP

Adult Neurology Outpatient APP Lead

Department of Neurology

Division of Vascular and Critical Care

Phone: 804-828-9350

Fax: 804-827-1744

Email: Georgene.Wood@vcuhealth.org