Congenital Heart Valve Program

The Boston Children's Hospital Congenital Heart Valve Program — part of the #1 ranked Heart Center — has a strong record of excellence in caring for children and adults with congenital heart defects that involve absent or poorly functioning heart valves.

Our dedicated cardiologists and surgeons focus on surgical valve repair rather than replacement, and whenever possible we take the most minimally invasive approach to treatment. Since 2006, we have performed close to 300 catheter-based aortic valve dilations on neonates and infants — including on patients who were less than four weeks old.

Our care is driven by our research. To facilitate our ability to repair diseased heart valves, our scientists investigate the intricate details and structure of congenitally malformed heart valves. Repairing valves leads to better long term outcomes since replacement valves are not always available in the tiny sizes needed by our patients.

Conditions and Treatments

Our specialists treat the full spectrum of heart disorders and diseases, including:

Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR or PAPVR)  Patent Ductus Arteriosus 
Aortic valve stenosis Pulmonary Atresia
Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Pulmonary Hypertension
Atrioventricular Canal Defect Single Ventricle Defects
Atrial Septal Defect Tetralogy of Fallot (ToF, Tet)
Coarctation of the Aorta Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) with Pulmonary Atresia
Coronary Artery Fistula Transposition of the Great Arteries (TGA)
Double Outlet Right Ventricle (DORV) Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR)
Ebstein's anomaly Tricuspid Atresia
Fragile X Syndrome Truncus Arteriosis
Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD)

Research and Innovation

In 1938, Boston Children's cardiac surgeon Robert Gross, MD, performed the world's first successful surgery to correct a child's heart defect. Since that time, our program's culture has been one of innovation — of solving difficult problems that others haven't been able to solve, tackling the most complex cases, and figuring out ways to make the process easier on patients. We are focused on developing new methods to repair rather than replace whenever possible, with minimally invasive approaches.

The depth of our team and our clinical innovations make us leaders in treating children and adults with heart valve defects. Our advances in this area include innovative three-dimensional echocardiographic imaging that guides surgical planning and new catheter techniques that allow us to improve the function of heart valves that were once considered untreatable.

Next Steps

For questions, more information, or to schedule an appointment for your child, please call the International Heart Center anytime at +1-857-218-3913 or email You may want to begin gathering relevant paperwork such as the patient's height and weight, medications, most recent echocardiogram in DICOM-preferred format (and accompanying report), most recent cardiology summary and clinical status, as well as any other recent cardiac studies such as cath, MRI or CT scans.