Have a healthy heart for life

Doctor holding heart

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) Children born with heart defects need specialized, lifelong follow-up care. They need someone who understands the impact of a congenital heart defect, which is different from the impact of developing heart problems as an adult. The Congenital Heart Center at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital has a team that understands the importance of continuing care for adults with congenital heart disease.

A baby or child with a heart defect can undergo treatment like surgery or catheterization early in their life, but that doesn’t mean they are cured. While medical care and treatment for a congenital heart defect someone received as an infant or child helped make things better, few defects ever go away. That’s why it’s important for individuals living with a congenital heart defect receive follow-up treatment from a congenital heart specialist

The number of adults living with congenital heart disease is far greater than the number of children with the condition and is expected to keep growing by about five percent each year. Because of advances in medical care, there aren’t the same restrictions for many of patients as there were in the past.

Depending on the type of defect, it can impact:

  • Lifestyle choices and safe exercise
  • Career choices
  • Birth control, pregnancy and childbearing
  • Medications
  • Treatment for other health conditions

Adults living with congenital heart disease need someone who understands what they had as a child and its impact on the heart and body as they grow. Maintaining health throughout life, for many, is a partnership with congenital heart teams extending into adult life. The Congenital Heart Center at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital has the expertise to help individuals as children and adults. It is one of the few centers in the country that can offer a seamless transition of care as patients mature into adulthood.

Join Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital to celebrate success in the fight against congenital heart disease and to raise awareness of the possibilities for the future at the Congenital Heart Walk on Saturday, May 21 in Kalamazoo. It takes place at Flesher Field and includes the walk as well as family activities. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. and the walk is at 10 a.m. Register online!

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is also the presenting sponsor of the Adult Congenital Heart Association regional event in Grand Rapids on Saturday, June 11. It’s an opportunity to hear from patients and experts to learn more about care options. It’s from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. Admission is $15 per person. Register online!

Congenital Heart Center
Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital
100 Michigan Street NE, Floor 10
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 267-9150

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