Paediatric heart failure from the eyes of the cardiologist

Pier Paolo Bassareo, Giuseppe Mercuro


The causes of heart failure (HF) in children differ substantially from those found in the adult population. They comprise cardiac and noncardiac causes. Today, with the near-disappearance of rheumatic fever, the most common cause of pediatric HF are congenital heart diseases, whilst cardiomyopathies are the most common cause of HF in children with a structurally normal heart. Signs and symptoms of pediatric HF are often not specific, most of all in newborns (difficulties in breastfeeding, excessive sweating, growth retardation and poor weight gain). The aim of the therapy is to clinically control HF through general measures as well as drugs administration. In this respect, due to the lack of large interventional trials, the HF in newborns and children is often extrapolated from adult large trials. Cardiac transplantation is currently the treatment option with good outcome and long-term survival in pediatric patients with end-stage or refractory HF.


Proceedings of the International Course on Perinatal Pathology (part of the 10th International Workshop on Neonatology · October 22nd-25th, 2014) · Cagliari (Italy) · October 25th, 2014 · The role of the clinical pathological dialogue in problem solving

Guest Editors: Gavino Faa, Vassilios Fanos, Peter Van Eyken


heart failure; newborns; children; congenital heart disease; therapy

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