Cardiac neurodevelopmental follow-up clinic

Neurodevelopment is a term that describes how our brains grow and form connections that direct our function and behaviors.  Infants and children with congenital heart defects are at risk for delays in areas such as motor skills, coordination and learning. Early and periodic evaluation is recommended for infants and children with congenital heart conditions to help them develop to their fullest potential.

Why choose Children’s Minnesota?

Children’s Minnesota cardiac neurodevelopmental follow-up clinic is the only program in Minnesota providing comprehensive clinical and developmental evaluations and ongoing coordinated care to support children with complex heart defects from infancy through adolescence.

In collaboration with the Children’s Heart Clinic and the child’s primary care provider,  the clinic provides children and their families the expertise of a team of pediatric specialists:

  • Cardiologists, nurse practitioners and cardiac surgeons
  • Developmental-behavioral pediatricians and nurse practitioners
  • Psychologists and neuropsychologists
  • Physical medicine and rehabilitation specialists, including:
  • Audiologists
  • Geneticists
  • Neurologists

Learn about our services

Who is eligible to be seen in the clinic?

Infants and children with congenital heart disease requiring surgical intervention are eligible to be seen at the clinic. Additionally, certain children with congenital heart conditions are at higher risk for developmental disorders and disabilities. These children include:

  • Children with specific heart conditions, such as:

Patients can be seen anytime after six months of age, even if by all appearances they are developing typically. If you have questions regarding participation, please discuss with your child’s cardiologist.

How do I schedule an appointment?

We require a referral from the patient’s primary care provider and/or cardiologist for the initial visit. Our intake coordinator will assist with scheduling your child.

What should I expect at the visit?

As a part of the program, our patients receive regular follow-up care throughout childhood. The frequency of visits will vary depending on the unique needs of your child.

Often these visits will consist of a multidisciplinary approach to evaluation. Our youngest patients will be seen in conjunction with an occupational therapist and a developmental provider. School age children may also be seen by a neuropsychologist.

As part of the visit, you and your child may participate in the following:

  • Review of past medical, social and developmental histories
  • Developmental testing including cognition, motor development, speech and language development and social/emotional development
  • Physical examination

Our goal is to help to determine appropriate early intervention services and educational supports. We will also address the need for additional specialists and share this information with parents/caregivers to improve developmental and behavioral outcomes.

What happens after the initial visit?

After each assessment, parents and the primary care provider receive a comprehensive report of clinical findings and developmental testing, as well as a follow-up treatment plan if needed.

After the initial evaluation by a developmental-behavioral pediatrician or certified nurse practitioner, the cardiac neurodevelopmental follow-up clinic will work with you to schedule future visits and appropriate specialist follow up.

Contact our clinic today

To learn more about the clinic or schedule an appointment, please call the developmental pediatric intake coordinator at 651-220-6602.