Heart defects are the most common form of birth defect, and serious congenital heart issues are typically found in infancy. After surgical repair during childhood, many adults with congenital heart disease believe they no longer need a specialist’s care and stop seeing a cardiologist altogether. This inaction places individuals at high risk and can result in long-term compromised health.
The American College of Cardiology recommends that adults with congenital heart disease be seen regularly by experts at a highly specialized adult congenital heart disease center.
Congenital Heart Disease Specialists
Saint Luke's cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute provide comprehensive care and a multidisciplinary team approach to treating patients with congenital heart disease. A cardiologist specifically trained and experienced in evaluating and treating the condition is the physician responsible for coordinating care. In addition to high-quality, advanced cardiovascular care, treatment often involves specialties such as: gynecology, obstetrics, hepatology, neurology, perinatology, primary care, pulmonology, and rehabilitation.
By receiving care at Saint Luke’s, patients improve their quality of life while helping researchers develop best care practices for other individuals living with this challenging heart condition.
Nationally Recognized Expertise
U.S. News & World Report consistently ranks Saint Luke’s Hospital of Kansas City among the top cardiology and heart surgery programs in the nation. In 1981, the staff at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute opened the doors to the world’s first dedicated, free-standing heart institute. Since that time, Saint Luke’s experts have earned a worldwide reputation for clinical excellence and innovation.
Call 816-932-5784 to schedule an appointment.
Saint Luke’s cardiovascular specialists help address the following types of congenital heart disease in adults and children over the age of 14.
- Anomalous origin of the coronary arteries
- Atrial septal defect
- Ventricular septal defect
- Aortic arch abnormalities (coarctation, interruption, hypoplasia)
- Aortic stenosis (valvar, subvalvar, and supravalvar)
- Conduit failure
- Congenitally corrected transposition of the great arteries
- Ebstein's anomaly
- Patent ductus arteriosus
- Pulmonary stenosis (valvar, subvalvar, and supravalvar)
- Tetralogy of fallot
- Valvar disorders, congenital (aortic, pulmonic, mitral, and tricuspid)
To ensure patients receive the best, most appropriate care, cardiologists may recommend a series of tests to measure the heart's function:
Common tests for heart function:
- Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
- Chest X-rays
- Cardiac catheterization and angiogram
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Computerized tomography (CT)
- Transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE)
- Exercise stress testing
Special heart rhythm testing:
- Holter monitor
- Event monitor
- Implantable event recorder
- Transtelephonic pacemaker/ICD transmission
- Electrophysiology studies
Once the appropriate tests are performed, patients will discuss treatment options with a cardiologist.
- Minimally-invasive procedures and surgery
- Diagnostic cardiac catheterization
- Balloon valvuloplasty: aortic, pulmonary, and mitral
- Stent implantation: pulmonary stenosis, and aortic coarctation
- Septal closures: ASD, VSD, PFO
- Patent ductus arteriosus closure
- Transcatheter valve implantation: aortic, pulmonary, mitral, and tricuspid
- Electrophysiology (EP)
- Pacemakers, implantable cardioverter defibrillators, and biventricular pacing devices
- Electrophysiology studies to identify and treat cardiac arrhythmias
- Radiofrequency/catheter ablation with 3D mapping
- Advanced imaging for complex catheter ablations
- State-of-the-art intracardiac monitoring and recording
- Left atrial ablation procedures
- Complex laser lead extractions
- Other advanced treatments