Cardiac catheterization

Children’s has the only dedicated pediatric cardiac catheterization lab in the Upper Midwest.

Increasingly, cardiologists and cardiac surgeons perform corrective procedures without subjecting patients to the rigors, potential complications, and extended hospital stays of open-heart surgery. These “minimally invasive” techniques allow smaller, more ill patients to endure major surgical procedures with minimalized risks. These procedures typically use cardiac catheterization, which involves inserting a catheter (tube) into a vessel in the groin area, arm or neck and then threading it into the heart.

Children’s catheterization lab, or “cath” lab, was the first in the Upper Midwest designed for and solely dedicated to the unique needs of children and is the first in the U.S. to receive a new system designed to reduce radiation exposure for patients and staff. Children’s cath lab sees more than 300 children per year and offers a full range of services, interventional diagnostic catheterization, and electrophysiology studies. The electrophysiology lab is the only pediatric-specific lab in the Upper Midwest and offers electrophysiology studies both to diagnose heart conditions and to correct specific cardiac abnormalities.

At Children’s, catheterization procedures are performed in a pediatric-specific catheterization lab. Children’s cath lab is the only one in the region designed and dedicated solely for the unique medical needs of children. Children’s cath lab team sees more than 250 children per year for diagnostic catheterization procedures, interventional catheterization procedures, and electrophysiologic (EP) studies. The cath lab is built to operating room specifications, which allows physicians to quickly initiate surgery in the rare instances where a catheterization patient’s condition warrants it.

Services typically are possible for children with intracardiac devices.

Services include:

  • Angioplasty
  • ASD closure
  • Balloon atrial septostomy
  • Diagnostic angiography
  • Electrophysiology services
  • Endomyocardial biopsy
  • Fenestrated Fontan
  • Hemodynamic evaluation
  • Intravascular stent placement
  • PDA closure
  • Transcatheter patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) closure with Amplatzer Piccolo™
  • Transcatheter valve replacement with Harmony™ TPV
  • Valvuloplasty
  • Vascular testing
  • Vasodilator testing
  • VSD closure

The following diagnoses typically can be treated in the cath lab: