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Some children with congenital heart defects (heart conditions present at birth) have only one effective pumping chamber, a condition known as single ventricle heart disease.
Single ventricle heart diseases, such as hypoplastic left heart syndrome and tricuspid atresia, are treated by performing three surgeries early in a child's life, called the Norwood, Glenn and Fontan procedures. These operations do not completely repair the heart defect but allows the child to grow up and a lead normal, active life. However, these children also face health challenges that are best cared for by a multidisciplinary, evidence-based program like the Single Ventricle Clinic at Children’s Colorado.
Specialists in the Single Ventricle Clinic provide expert consultation and treatment of the unique issues that arise after the Norwood, Glenn, and Fontan operations. For example, the Fontan circulation may affect a patient’s lungs, liver, intestines, bones, blood and other organ systems. Our specialists have expertise in evaluating and treating problems like plastic bronchitis and protein-losing enteropathy. Also, children may have everyday challenges with self-esteem and other issues in school. We have developed ways to manage those issues and others based on current research and clinical experience.
Ours is the only program in a seven-state region dedicated to caring for all the health concerns for kids who have had a Norwood, Glenn and Fontan operation. This program is an innovative, new approach to the care of children who have had these procedures.
Our team includes pediatric cardiologists who specialize in single ventricle heart disease. The other subspecialists on the team have a specific interest and clinical experience in single ventricle-related problems, and our multidisciplinary team allows us to provide care for all of a patient’s health concerns in one place.
Single ventricle heart defects are rare, only affecting a small number of children in our population. However, they are one of the most complex heart conditions, usually requiring at least one surgery.
Our program participates in the National Pediatric Cardiology Quality Improvement Collaborative, a national research program for single ventricle heart disease. We are also an auxiliary site for the Pediatric Heart Network Fontan Udenafil Longitudinal Assessment Trial (FUEL).
For more information or to make an appointment, please contact the Single Ventricle Care Program at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 720-777-2943.