Nearly 1 in 100 children has some type of congenital (present at birth) heart defect. The Fetal Cardiology Program at Norton Children’s Heart Institute, affiliated with the UofL School of Medicine, provides diagnoses of congenital heart defects before birth. Finding a congenital heart defect before birth can improve a baby’s health and help the family prepare and plan for the baby’s care.
Fetal Echocardiograms Find Heart Defects
The Fetal Cardiology Program uses a fetal echocardiogram to diagnose a congenital heart defect before a baby is born. An echocardiogram can show:
This noninvasive test uses ultrasound waves and is safe for both mother and baby. Our pediatric cardiologists can perform a fetal echocardiogram during the second or third trimester of pregnancy.
Norton Children’s offers fetal echocardiograms at six locations in Louisville, Central and Western Kentucky. At all Louisville locations, our fetal echocardiogram sonographers are on-site to perform the test. At our four other Kentucky locations outside of Louisville, the echocardiogram images are transmitted to Louisville immediately, where they are reviewed by one of our board-certified pediatric cardiologists.
Integrated Care From Conception Through Delivery, Childhood and Beyond
Working closely with referring obstetrical care providers, our physicians provide ongoing care throughout pregnancy and follow-up care for the baby after delivery, including:
- Collaboration with maternal-fetal medicine specialists who provide high-risk pregnancy care
- Full range of prenatal testing, diagnosis and counseling
- Coordination of follow-up monitoring and care throughout the pregnancy
- Ongoing communication and coordination with referring physicians
- Preparation for baby’s birth
- Guidance and transitioning of care after delivery
Learn What to Expect From the Fetal Cardiology Program
The Right Kind of Collaborative Care for Your Child
The fetal cardiology team works closely with other physicians and programs within Norton Children’s Heart Institute, affiliated with the UofL School of Medicine. Our team performs all diagnostic testing, surgeries and follow-up care at our locations.
Providers from Norton Children’s Heart Institute are skilled in treating congenital heart conditions in children. You can draw strength, comfort and confidence from our highly trained specialists, including:
- Pediatric cardiothoracic surgeons
- Pediatric transplant surgeons
- Pediatric cardiologists
- Fetal cardiologists
- Adult congenital heart disease cardiologists
- Heart failure/heart transplant cardiologists
- Pediatric cardiac catheterization cardiologists
- Pediatric electrophysiologists
- Pediatric critical care physicians
- Pediatric cardiovascular anesthesiologists
- Cardiac critical care nurses
- Cardiac nurse practitioners
- Critical care pharmacists
- Child life specialists
- Diagnostic imaging specialists
- Family support team members
- Genetic counselors
- Social workers
Why Choose Norton Children’s Heart Institute
No other congenital heart surgery program in Kentucky, Ohio or Southern Indiana is rated higher by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons than the Norton Children’s Heart Institute Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery Program.
- Norton Children’s Hospital is a pioneer in pediatric cardiothoracic surgery, performing Kentucky’s first pediatric heart transplant in 1986 and becoming the second site in the United States to perform an infant heart transplant.
- Our board-certified and fellowship-trained pediatric cardiovascular surgeons are leaders in the field as clinicians and researchers.
- More than 5,000 children a year visit Norton Children’s Heart Institute for advanced heart care.
- Norton Children’s Heart Institute successfully performs more than 17,500 procedures a year.
- The Society of Thoracic Surgeons rated Norton Children’s Heart Institute among the best in the region after studying years of our patients’ outcomes and our ability to treat a range of pediatric heart conditions, including the most severe.
- Norton Children’s Heart Institute has satellite outpatient offices in Ashland, Bowling Green, Campbellsville, Elizabethtown, Frankfort, London, Madisonville, Murray, Owensboro, Paducah and Shepherdsville in Kentucky; and Corydon, Jasper, Madison and Scottsburg in Indiana; as well as 28 tele-echocardiography locations in Kentucky and Southern Indiana; and six fetal echocardiography locations across Kentucky.
- The American Board of Thoracic Surgery has awarded the cardiothoracic surgeons at Norton Children’s Hospital with subspecialty certification in congenital heart surgery.
- The Jennifer Lawrence Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU) is the largest dedicated CICU in Kentucky, equipped with 17 private rooms and the newest technology available for heart care .
- Our multidisciplinary approach to pediatric heart surgery brings together our specialists in cardiothoracic surgery, cardiology, anesthesiology, cardiac critical care and other areas to create a complete care plan tailored for your child.