The Children’s Heart Center at Deborah

From Birth to Adulthood–Deborah is With Your Child
Children of the World®

Outpatient Pediatric Cardiology

Cardiology

Board-certified pediatric cardiologists and an experienced pediatric nurse practitioner provide diagnostic outpatient evaluations for children suspected to have congenital or acquired heart disease. Such patients can include those with heart murmurs, cyanosis, arrhythmias, chest pain, and syncope, as well as sports-related concerns. Comprehensive follow-up care is provided for children diagnosed with any form of heart disease.

peds-ge

The Preventive Cardiology Program

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death worldwide. Although cardiovascular disease usually affects older adults, the antecedents of CVD, notably atherosclerosis, begin in childhood.

There is a growing pandemic of obesity and CVD risk factors in childhood. For example, the prevalence of childhood obesity increased from 5.0% in the 1970s to 16.9% in this decade. Epidemiology studies have shown that obesity in childhood is associated with adulthood coronary heart disease. Other CVD risk factors, such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia, smoking, etc. are also on the rise in the US and worldwide.

Our Preventive Cardiology Program at the Children’s Heart Center at Deborah is one of the only such programs in the region. We screen, diagnose, treat and prevent those conditions that may lead to early onset of cardiovascular disease.

If your child has any of the following conditions, you may consider seeing a pediatrician or a preventive cardiologist to assess, treat and prevent cardiovascular disease in future:

High cardiovascular risk conditions:

  • T1DM and T2DM
  • Chronic kidney disease/end stage
  • Renal disease/ post–kidney transplant
  • Post–heart transplant
  • Kawasaki disease with current coronary artery aneurysms

Moderate cardiovascular risk conditions:

  • Kawasaki disease with regressed coronary aneurysms
  • Chronic inflammatory disease
  • HIV
  • Nephrotic syndrome

Other cardiovascular risk conditions:

  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • Dyslipidemia

The Fetal Cardiology Program

Congenital heart defect is the most common birth defect in babies. It also causes significant mortality and morbidity in children. Now, most congenital heart defects can be diagnosed prenatally and a care plan created with the future parents and family for before, during and after delivery—with intervention rendered before or after delivery, if indicated—to offer babies with heart defects the best long-term outcomes.

As there is growing evidence that the outcome of significant cardiovascular disease improves if diagnosed and cared for before birth, we use cardiac ultrasound or fetal echocardiography to screen, diagnose, assess and care for babies with possible heart conditions. This will also provide an opportunity to counsel the expectant parents and family on the cardiovascular disease their baby may have.

Accurate diagnosis and assessment of a fetus with possible cardiovascular disease brings all the care team (fetal cardiologists; geneticist; neonatologists; maternal fetal medicine experts; and other physicians and staff) together to provide integrated care for the baby and achieve the best possible outcome.

Our Fetal Cardiology program at the Children’s Heart Center at Deborah is one of the only such programs in the region. We screen, diagnose, and treat cardiovascular disease before birth. If you have the following conditions, you may consider seeing a fetal cardiologist to screen, diagnose, assess, and treat possible cardiovascular disease:

Maternal factors:

  • Pregestational diabetes mellitus
  • Gestational diabetes mellitus (HbA1c>6%)
  • Phenylketonuria
  • Lupus or Sjögrens, if SSA/SSB autoantibody positive
  • Medication exposures
  • Maternal infection
  • Use of assisted reproduction technology

Family history:

  • Maternal, paternal, sibling, second-degree/third-degree relative (with left-sided obstructive lesions) with structural cardiac disease
  • First- or second-degree relative with disease, disorder, or syndrome with mendelian inheritance associated with structural cardiac disease

Fetal factors:

  • Suspected cardiac abnormality on obstetric ultrasound
  • Rhythm abnormalities
  • Noncardiac abnormality
  • Known or suspected chromosomal abnormality
  • Increased NT
  • Abnormality of umbilical cord, placenta, or intra-abdominal venous anatomy
  • Monochorionic twinning
  • Hydrops fetalis

To schedule an appointment: 609-735-2923

Healthy Hearts for Teens Program

Deborah Heart and Lung Center and Rowan Medicine have come together to address the overweight and obesity problems affecting young adults in our region. Most pediatricians and school nurses today have little time to work with teens who are overweight or obese. The Healthy Hearts for Teens Program offers the services of an adolescent weight management specialist, together with a dietician and the resources of the Pediatric Cardiology Department at Deborah Heart and Lung Center.

Adolescents referred to the program will undergo an assessment with the weight management specialist, a pediatric nurse and a dietician. The program, which entails six visits over six months, focuses on health eating and activities that provide families with the tools necessary to adopt on ongoing healthy lifestyle.

Preventive cardiology services, including evaluations and assessments by the Pediatric Cardiology staff, will be provided as deemed appropriate by the program staff.

Obesity-Related Conditions

Type II Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is one of the most serious complications of childhood obesity. As many as 45% of children with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus have type 2 rather than type 1 disease.

Hypertension

Approximately 13% of overweight children have elevated systolic blood pressure and approximately 9% have elevated diastolic blood pressure.

Hyperlipidemia

The CDC reports 1 in 5 teens in the U.S have been diagnosed with hyperlipidemia. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests more aggressive testing guidelines in obese children.

Schedule an Appointment

Deborah/Rowan Healthy Hearts for Teens Program: 609-735-2923.
You may also fax referrals: 609-735-1680.

*Patients will be referred back to the referring pediatrician for ongoing pediatric care.

The Adult Congenital Heart Program

Congenital heart disease is the most common birth defect and a major cause of death and chronic illness in young infants. Treatment of congenital heart disease, including open heart surgery, is a medical miracle in the last century and now most babies born with congenital heart disease survive into adulthood.

The Adult Congenital Heart Program at Deborah Heart and Lung Center is the first such specialized program in the states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It provides care to adults with congenital heart disease, in continuity with excellent heart care for fetuses, infants, children, adolescents and young adults within our community, regionally, nationally and worldwide.

Our Adult Congenital Heart Program at Deborah integrates teams from pediatric and adult cardiology and also cardiothoracic surgery, partnering with the team from St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children to provide the best care to young adults, helping them transition from pediatric to adult cardiac care in seamless fashion.

Due to the tremendous progress and success of care with congenital heart disease, there are more adults than children with congenital heart disease. This recent trend necessitates the need for referral of adults with complex congenital heart disease to a center of excellence — such as The Adult Congenital Heart Program at Deborah Heart and Lung Center — for the best care and outcome.