Background: Regional low-flow perfusion is an alternative to deep hypothermic circulatory arrest, but whether regional low-flow perfusion improves neurologic outcome after deep hypothermic circulatory arrest in neonates remains unknown. We tested neurologic recovery after regional low-flow perfusion compared with deep hypothermic circulatory arrest in a neonatal piglet model. Methods: Sixteen neonatal piglets underwent cardiopulmonary bypass, were randomized to 90 minutes of deep hypothermic circulatory arrest or regional low-flow perfusion (10 mL · kg-1 · min -1) at 18°C, and survived for 1 week. Standardized neurobehavioral scores were obtained on postoperative days 1, 3, and 7 (0 = no deficit to 90 = brain death). Histopathologic scores were determined on the basis of the percentage of injured and apoptotic neurons in the neocortex and hippocampus by hematoxylin and eosin and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated deoxyuridine triphosphate-biotin nick-end labeling (0 = no injury to 4 = diffuse injury). Differences between groups were tested by using the Wilcoxon rank sum test, and results are listed as medians within a range. Results: There were no significant differences between groups during cardiopulmonary bypass. Postoperative neurobehavioral scores were abnormal in 25% (2/8) of the regional low-flow perfusion animals versus 88% (7/8) of controls. Regional low-flow perfusion animals had significantly less neurologic injury compared with controls on postoperative day 1 (0.00 [range, 0-5] vs 12.5 [range, 0-52]; P < .008). There was a trend for less severe injury in the regional low-flow perfusion group (2.0 [range, 1-4] vs 0.0 [range, 0-50]; P = .08) on hematoxylin and eosin. The degree of apoptosis was significantly less in the regional low-flow perfusion group (0.0 [range, 0-1] vs 2.5 [range, 0-4]; P = .03). Conclusions: Regional low-flow perfusion decreases neuronal injury and improves early postoperative neurologic function after deep hypothermic circulatory arrest in neonatal piglets.