With the advances in cardiac care now available, there are more adults with congenital heart diseases than children. Although people born with a heart disease are living longer, healthier lives, they still require ongoing cardiac care. Patients with congenital heart disease experience cardiac issues differently than adults with acquired heart disease. That is why Cohen Children’s Heart Center created the Adult Congenital Heart Program.
The congenital heart program at Cohen Children’s Heart Center is one of fewer than 100 programs in the United States dedicated to caring for adults with congenital heart diseases, in consultation with their pediatric cardiologist. Patients are evaluated for possible arrhythmias, thromboembolic complications, pulmonary hypertension and heart failure. Patients with certain types of heart disease require special attention during pregnancy, and our cardiologists provide this specialized care in conjunction with obstetricians and perinatologists.
The Adult Congenital Heart Program offers outpatient consultations at Cohen Children’s. In addition, inpatient consultations are available at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, North Shore University Hospital and Lenox Hill Hospital.
Our Adult Congenital Heart Program team includes adult and pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, cardiovascular anesthesiologists, genetic counselors, nutritionists, exercise physiologists, social workers, nurse practitioners, nurses and staff who are trained in treating adults with congenital heart defects. We treat a full spectrum of heart conditions, including:
- Anomalous coronary artery
- Atrioventricular septal defect
- Atrial septal defects
- Coarctation of the aorta
- Congenitally corrected transposition
- Double outlet right ventricle
- Epstein anomaly of the tricuspid valve
- Eisenmenger syndrome (pulmonary arterial hypertension)
- Partial and total anomalous pulmonary venous connection
- Single ventricle – hypoplastic left heart syndrome, tricuspid or pulmonary atresia
- Transposition of the great vessels – post Mustard/Senning operation and arterial switch
- Tretralogy of Fallot
- Truncus arteriosus
- Vascular rings
We also treat patients who have congenital heart disease as part of a genetic syndrome.
Expert care — Most primary care physicians and adult cardiologists do not have the appropriate training to provide care for the complex conditions that patients with congenital heart disease have. The physicians and staff in the Adult Congenital Heart Program have unique expertise in providing care to adults that have these conditions. We transition patients from pediatric care to adulthood and serve as a liaison to adult healthcare specialists.
Coordinated care — As our patients move into adulthood, they often face many questions like, “Should I exercise? What type of birth control is appropriate? Can I have a baby? What is the chance I pass this on to my child? Can I do certain jobs? Do I need management of my cholesterol and triglyceride levels? Do I need anticoagulation therapy? Do I need bacterial endocarditis prophylaxis?”
Our program provides education and counseling to help patients plan for their future. We work closely with obstetricians, maternal-fetal medicine doctors, genetic counselors, internal medicine and subspecialists, psychiatrists, nutritionists, exercise physiologists and a number of other healthcare providers to ensure our patients can lead productive lives.
Advanced research and therapies — The field of pediatric cardiology has advanced in the past 30 years. But much is still unknown about the effects of congenital heart defects on children and adults. Our pediatric cardiologists and other faculty members are accomplished researchers and are active in clinical research set to discover the causes of heart defects and develop new treatments.