February 22, 2012
Contact: Joey McCool Ryan, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, (267) 258-6735 or McCool@email.chop.edu
An international group of almost 1,000 medical experts gathers this week to discuss the most current treatments for children with heart disease. Affecting about a million children born each year throughout the world, congenital heart disease is the most common birth defect. In its severe forms, it is also the leading cause of death from birth defects in infants.
Cardiology 2012, the 16th Annual Update on Pediatric and Congenital Cardiovascular Disease, occurs in Orlando, Fla., today through Feb. 26. Sponsored by The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the conference is one of the largest stand-alone annual pediatric cardiology meetings of its kind, bringing together leaders in the field of pediatric heart care from hospitals across the U.S. and around the world. The conference is co-hosted by Orlando Health. The focus is on congenital heart disease from fetus to adulthood, with more than 300 presentations over five days.
Cardiologists, heart surgeons, anesthesiologists and nurses from nearly every state and 5 countries will exchange their experience and discuss new research on medications, surgery, catheterization to treat CHD. In addition, the experts will discuss ways to improve long-term outcomes and quality of life for children and young adults with heart disease. Special sessions will address advances in fetal cardiology and creating the adult congenital heart program of the future. Attendees will also observe real-time echocardiographic imaging of surgically repaired heart defects in infants and older children and exercise testing in children and adolescents. Leaders from community groups including Amy Verstappen, president of the Adult Congenital Heart Association and Annamarie Saarinen, founder of “1in100” will be in attendance to speak about advocacy.
“At Cardiology 2012, the most significant advances in patient care, safety measures, collaboration between institutions and best practices are discussed by the people on the front lines,” said the conference’s course director, Gil Wernovsky, MD, associate chief of Cardiology at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “The topics to be covered are the most cutting-edge in pediatric cardiology today and will be shared by the clinicians making the advances happen.”
Six oral presentations, in competition for the Annual Outstanding Investigator Award, will be featured on Friday, Feb. 24. Videos of the presenters will be available on heart.chop.edu/cardiology2012/media.
Original research will be presented throughout the meeting from over 30 cardiac programs in the US and abroad. All presented abstracts are published in the online issue of the April edition of the World Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery.
With nearly a century of caring for the most fragile hearts, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia will premiere a special video at Cardiology 2012.
The Cardiac Center at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is one of the largest centers in the world caring for children with heart disease. Babies who are prenatally diagnosed with a congenital heart defect may be delivered in the Garbose Family Special Delivery Unit, the world’s first delivery unit exclusively for babies with congenital conditions. The unit’s staff includes pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, pediatric cardiac anesthesiologists, cardiac nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, social workers, respiratory therapists, child life specialists, operating room technicians and many others.