5 Ways Pediatric Cardiologists Diagnose Heart Problems

If your child’s doctor detects a heart murmur or other symptom of a heart problem in your child, they’ll most likely recommend you visit a heart specialist. The best pediatric cardiologist will use different types of tests when diagnosing a heart condition in your child.

1. Echocardiogram

An echocardiogram uses an ultrasound device to create a picture of your child’s heart. These are often used before your baby is born if a congenital heart defect is noticed. It’s best used to check for abnormalities in physical structure and motion of a child’s heart.

2. Electrocardiogram

This test is used to detect and study heart defects that cause problems with the rhythm of your child’s heart by recording its electrical activity. Electrodes placed on a child’s chest by their pediatric cardiologist show waves that measure the heart’s beating.

3. Chest X-Ray

Your child’s pediatric cardiologist may use an X-ray to check for signs of heart failure such as an enlarged heart or blood in the child’s lungs. Chest X-rays are also helpful when looking for congestion in the heart and arteries caused by a heart condition.

The best pediatric cardiologist will explore as many options as needed when diagnosing your child’s heart condition.

4. Pulse Oximetry

Pulse oximetry uses a sensor placed on your child’s finger to measure the amount of oxygen in their blood. Because the heart is responsible for transferring oxygen into the blood stream, a lack of oxygen in the blood can indicate a heart defect or other condition.

5. Cardiac Catheterization

A catheter is a small, flexible tube that is inserted into a blood vessel and guided into the child’s heart. This procedure is very helpful for locating narrowed and blocked arteries. The best pediatric cardiologist will use it as a window into the functioning of your child’s heart.