Congenital heart defects are problems with the heart present at birth. Some heart defects may be inherited, but in many cases they happen by chance during a baby’s development.

When heart defects are detected during pregnancy, our pediatric cardiac surgeons, pediatric cardiologists and medical geneticists meet with parents to better understand their child’s condition and develop a treatment plan. At CHKD, our expert surgeons can quickly perform specialized heart surgery for even the smallest patients.

Though many heart defects are detected in infants, some children may not be diagnosed until later in life. They may display symptoms such as:

  • Bluish skin (cyanosis)
  • Tiring easily
  • Breathing quickly or heavily
  • Growing more slowly or trouble gaining weight
  • Feeding problems
  • Frequent respiratory infections

CHKD pediatric heart surgeons use minimally invasive procedures to correct heart defects whenever possible in order to reduce the risks associated with surgery. Our state-of-the-art pediatric catheterization lab is designed with specialized tools and equipment for children of all ages, from infants to teenagers. Our staff of surgeons, physicians, nurses and technologists has many years of experience treating children and understand how to care for their unique needs.

We offer comprehensive treatment, including medicines, open heart surgery, minimally invasive surgery and intensive care, for the following congenital heart defects:

To find out more about cardiac surgery services, visit the Cardiac Surgery webpage or call (757) 668-8850.