Care of infants, children and adults with congenital heart disease
evidence and practice    

Care of infants, children and adults with congenital heart disease

Kerry Gaskin Head of department for post-qualifying courses, Three Counties School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Worcester, Worcester, England, and chairperson of the Congenital Cardiac Nurses Association
Fiona Kennedy Adult congenital heart disease module coordinator, Barts Health NHS Trust, London, England, and member of the British Adult Congenital Cardiac Nurses Association

Why you should read this article:
  • To enhance your knowledge of the common structural anomalies seen in patients with congenital heart disease

  • To understand the treatment options for congenital heart disease in infants, children and adults

  • To raise your awareness of the importance of family-centred care and psychological support for patients with congenital heart disease

Congenital heart disease refers to an anatomical or physiological defect of the heart that is present at birth. Over the past three decades there have been significant advances in surgical, medical and nursing care for infants and children requiring cardiac surgery for congenital heart disease. This has meant that the number of adults with moderate and complex congenital heart disease now exceeds the number of children with the disease. This article details the background and diagnosis of congenital heart disease. It considers the implications for infants and children with congenital heart disease, as well as their parents, such as screening methods, risk factors, parental stress and psychosocial needs. This article also discusses the care of adults with congenital heart disease, including specialist monitoring and patient education.

Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2019.e11405

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software



Conflict of interest

None declared

Gaskin K, Kennedy F (2019) Care of infants, children and adults with congenital heart disease. Nursing Standard. doi: 10.7748/ns.2019.e11405

Published online: 01 July 2019

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