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Principal Investigator

L.M. (Lonneke) Staals MD, PhD

Assistant professor

  • Department
  • Anesthesiology



Since 2009 I work as pediatric anesthesiologist in the Erasmus MC Sophia Children’s Hospital, and since 2017 I am also the head of the department of pediatric and obstetric anesthesiology. My clinical areas of interest are anesthesia for ENT, airway and lung surgery, and the treatment of postoperative pain.


My research focuses on pharmacology; at first mostly on neuromuscular blocking agents and sugammadex (my PhD thesis), today more generally on pharmacology in pediatric anesthesiology, such as of local anesthetics and analgesics. This research is within the ACE Pharmacology en Therapeutics of the Erasmus MC. Besides pharmacology, I also investigate non-pharmacological ways of treatment of pain and anxiety in children, such as music and virtual reality tools. Other research is about improving anesthesia for lung- and airway surgery in children. This investigation focuses on perioperative monitoring during these operations, for example with transcutaneous O2 and CO2 monitoring, and the use of alternative ventilation strategies, such as THRIVE.

Field(s) of expertise

Pediatric Anesthesiology

Pharmacology: neuromuscular blocking agents, antagonists, local anesthetics, analgesics

Anesthesia for lung- and airway surgery in children

Postoperative pain Anxiety

Education and career

  • 1994 - 2001: Study Medicine, Catholic University of  Leuven, Belgium
  • 2003 - 2008: Residency in Anesthesiology, Radboud UMC, Nijmegen, the Netherlands
  • 2008 - 2009: Fellowship in Pediatric Anesthesiology, Radboud UMC, Nijmegen
  • 2009 - present: Pediatric Anesthesiologist, Erasmus MC Sophia, Rotterdam
  • 2011: PhD thesis: Sugammadex in renal failure. Radboud University Nijmegen
  • 2016: Assistant professor, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam
  • 2017 - present: Head of the department (sector) of pediatric and obstetric anesthesiology, Erasmus MC Sophia, Rotterdam


A complete overview of publications can be found here 

Teaching activities

As the Erasmus MC-Sophia is a teaching hospital for interns and residents, my main teaching activities are bedside teaching and providing education for residents and nurse trainees. As a member of the board of the Dutch Society for Pediatric Anesthesiology (Sectie Kinderanesthesiologie), we organize a yearly Refresher Coarse in Pediatric Anesthesiology, together with the Belgian Association for Pediatric Anesthesiology (BAPA). We also started a Pediatric Airway Network, providing education for general anesthesiologists in pediatric airway management and management of pediatric anesthesia emergencies.

Other positions

  • 2016 - present: Board member of the Sectie Kinderanesthesiologie (SKA) (Dutch Society for Pediatric Anesthesiology)
  • 2016 - present: President of the Sectie Kinderanesthesiologie
  • 2017 - present: Member of Pediatric Anesthesia Societies Common Interest Group, on behalf of the SKA

Scholarships, grants, and awards

Research grants from: Stichting Erasmus Fonds Pijngeneeskunde Stichting Theia Stichting Coolsingel Sophia Stichting voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (Vrienden van Sophia)

Current projects

Woundcatheter study: Prospective RCT: postoperative pain treatment of abdominal surgery in children < 1 year old, with a woundcatheter infusion with ropivacaine.

Koolmees study: Transcutaneous measurements of CO2 and O2 in children undergoing airway procedures. A Phase 4 Double-blinded, Randomized,Active Comparator-controlled Clinical Trial to Study the Efficacy, Safety, and Pharmacokinetics of Sugammadex (MK- 8616) for Reversal of Neuromuscular Blockade in Pediatric Participants.