The Fetal and Neonatal Cardiology Program, headed by Sheetal Patel, MD, ensures that families expecting a new baby with heart concerns receive the best diagnostic and counseling care available.
Our fetal/neonatal heart care team, which includes specialists from the Heart Center and The Chicago Institute for Fetal Health, evaluates fetuses of mothers with health conditions such as diabetes, lupus and Sjögren syndrome, which can affect heart development. We also treat a wide range of fetal and neonatal heart conditions, including:
The Heart Center provides specialized ultrasound imaging of the heart during pregnancy (fetal echocardiography). Each year our pediatric cardiologists perform more than 2,000 fetal echocardiograms at multiple sites in the greater Chicago area, with a diagnostic accuracy that exceeds 95%. The pediatric cardiologist is able to provide immediate results to the mother at the time of the scan.
Our partnership with Prentice Women's Hospital allows Lurie Children’s to offer complete heart care for expectant mothers’ babies as well as newborn infants. Prentice is connected to Lurie Children's by a bridged walkway. This proximity enables our cardiology team to intervene early in cases of complex heart disease and provide a seamless transfer of the newborn’s care to the Regenstein Cardiac Care Unit at Lurie Children’s.
Our cardiac surgical team at Lurie Children’s, headed by Joe Forbess, MD, MBA, Division Head, Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery, is supported by neonatologists, dedicated cardiac anesthesiologists and our team of cardiac intensivists. We participate in the Society of Thoracic Surgeons database, and our surgical outcomes are in the top 5% of 111 participating programs in the United States and Canada. The Society of Thoracic Surgeons also rated Lurie Children’s as a 3-Star hospital, the highest rating level awarded, in their Fall 2017 Harvest Report of the STS Congenital Cardiac Surgery Database.