Electrophysiology

If your child has been diagnosed with an arrhythmia or is suspected of having a heart rhythm problem, it's important to consult a pediatric electrophysiologist. At Boston Children's Hospital, our Electrophysiology Service — part of the #1 ranked Heart Center — offers a wide range of diagnostic and treatment options for children and adults who suffer from an abnormal heart rhythm.

Our service specializes in complex cases that require a high level of expertise. Our doctors and nurses routinely handle heart rhythm problems in even the tiniest and most vulnerable babies. With six full-time cardiologists, nurse specialists and trained fellows, we are one of world's largest and most experienced pediatric electrophysiology programs.

The skills and equipment for treating irregular heart rhythms are highly specialized, but must be tightly integrated with the patient's overall health and treatment for other conditions. This is an area where Boston Children's excels. Electrophysiologists partner closely with other cardiologists and other specialists to achieve the best outcomes for these complex cases.

Conditions and Treatments

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

Arrhythmia
Genetic arrhythmia disorders (including long QT syndrome)
Atrial flutter
Heart block
Cardiomyopathy Holter and Event Monitors
Ebstein's anomaly
Supraventricular tachycardia
Electrocardiogram EKG
Syncope
Exercise EKG testing
Tilt Table Evaluation
Fetal arrhythmias
Ventricular tachycardia

Procedures We Perform

Antiarrhythmic drug management
Arrhythmia surgery
Cardiac sympathectomy
Catheter ablation (radiofrequency ablation and cryoablation)
Electrophysiology studies
ICD (implantable defibrillator) implant and management
Pacemaker implant and management

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.

Edward Walsh, MD, and John Triedman, MD, of Boston Children's Electrophysiology Service, have helped develop a new technology that electrically maps the heart, providing an extremely detailed way to see where complex arrhythmias originate. The resulting catheter-based procedure allows Boston Children's cardiologists to treat arrhythmias with extreme precision. Our specialists use the technology to repair complex arrhythmias in more congenital heart patients than any other hospital in the world.

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 heart@childrens.harvard.edu. 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.