Addressing Nutrition and Growth in Children with Congenital Heart Disease



Adequate nutrition is required for infants and children to grow and develop normally. Children with congenital heart disease commonly experience growth failure early in life with major potential consequences. This is especially true for those children who require surgery during the first several weeks of life. The etiology of this growth failure poorly understood but often results in both short and long term adverse outcomes. Careful attention to growth monitoring and appropriate intervention when needed can alleviate some growth problems in children with congenital heart disease. This can be accomplished by standardization of monitoring and nutrition practices. Feeding infants with congenital heart disease also poses some risks including a higher risk of necrotizing enterocolitis and risks associated with enteral feeding via nasogastric tube. While there has been considerable improvement in our understanding of feeding problems in congenital heart disease, there is much work to be done to help understand and alleviate this problem.


Congenital heart disease Growth failure Nutrition Clinical outcomes Neurodevelopment 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, The Heart InstituteCincinnatiUSA

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