Congenital heart disease (CHD) is present in about 9 of every 1,000 live-born children. (1)(2)(3)(4)(5) Children with CHD are surviving longer, and better understanding of the long-term complications of CHD is continuously emerging. Hence, it is important to be comfortable with the primary care requirements for these children, including physical manifestations prior to surgery and interventional cardiac catheterizations, as well as those concerning for potential need for reintervention, the latest recommendations for endocarditis prophylaxis, respiratory precautions and immunization considerations, and close monitoring of development and behavior. In this article, we will discuss the common types of cyanotic (“blue”) and acyanotic (“pink”) CHD and the role of the primary care physician in the health care of these children before and after surgery and interventional cardiac catheterizations.

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Newborns with critical congenital heart disease...

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