Variability in the preoperative management of infants with hypoplastic left heart syndrome

Pediatr Cardiol. 2008 May;29(3):515-20. doi: 10.1007/s00246-007-9022-1. Epub 2007 Nov 22.


Infants with hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) commonly undergo initial surgical palliation during the first week of life. Few data exist on optimal preoperative management strategies; therefore, the management of these infants prior to surgery is anecdotal and variable. To more fully define this variability in preoperative care of infants with HLHS, a survey was designed to describe current preoperative management practices in the infant with HLHS. The questionnaire explored management styles as well as preoperative monitoring techniques and characteristics of the respondent's health care institution. The responses were compiled and are reported. A striking lack of consistency in preoperative management techniques for infants with HLHS is apparent. The impact of these preoperative strategies is unknown. Despite challenges in anatomic and hemodynamic variability at presentation, a prospective randomized controlled trial comparing ventilatory management techniques, enteral feeding strategies, and the utility of various monitoring tools on short- and long-term outcome is needed.

MeSH terms

  • Health Care Surveys
  • Humans
  • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome / surgery
  • Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome / therapy*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Preoperative Care / methods
  • Preoperative Care / standards*