#1 Ranked Children’s Hospital by U.S. News & World Report
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There are many ways you can help children and their families get the care they need.
Having identified your child's PFO, we at Boston Children's Hospital can begin the process of treating him. Our specialized training in pediatric cardiology means that we understand the unique challenges, circumstances and intricacies of working with young people who have heart conditions. In addition to our medical expertise, we provide patient-centered care that always recognizes your child as an individual—and we offer resources to meet the needs of your entire family.
Most often, a baby or child with a PFO doesn't need treatment at all. If your child needs surgery to treat an associated defect, the PFO may be closed at the time of the surgery.
Closing a PFO surgically—usually by insertion of a device that “plugs” the PFO and is gradually enveloped by the body's tissue—may be useful in limited select circumstances.
Surgery to repair a PFO is a fairly simple procedure that takes only a couple of hours at most. Children often need at most an overnight stay at the hospital, and can go home the same or the next day.
After your child's procedure, an anti-clotting medication is often prescribed for a number of months as a precautionary measure.Doctors will schedule routine follow-up visits to make sure the device has held its placement and is working well.
At Children's, we understand that a hospital visit can be difficult, and sometimes overwhelming. So, we offer many amenities to make your child's—and your own—hospital experience as pleasant as possible. Visit our Center for Families for all you need to know about:
In particular, we understand that you may have a lot of questions if your child is diagnosed with a PFO. How will it affect my child long term? What do we do next? We can connect you with a number of resources to help you and your family through this difficult time, including:
As your child reaches adulthood, you'll want him to know about our Boston Adult Congenital Heart (BACH) and Pulmonary Hypertension Service. Children's is a founding institution of BACH, an international center for excellence providing long-term inpatient and outpatient care and advanced therapeutic options as needed for congenital heart disease patients as they reach and progress through adulthood.
You'll be comforted to know that Children's pioneered interventional catheterization for many congenital heart defects and is a leader in the use of this procedure.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”