Cardiology Referral Guidelines

Children’s National Heart Institute brings together the region’s only team of dedicated pediatric cardiac surgeons, cardiologists, cardiac anesthesiologists, and dual-boarded cardiac intensivists to provide the highest quality care in the most technologically advanced setting.

Cardiology

The Division of Cardiology provides both inpatient and outpatient diagnostic and treatment services for a full range of pediatric cardiovascular disorders, including congenital heart disease, acquired heart disease, cardiomyopathy, fetal echocardiography, hypertension, premature atherosclerosis, and arrhythmias. Newborn consultation is offered in community hospital nurseries.

Special services include:
  •  Echocardiography - fetal, transesophageal, and 3D reconstruction
  •  Cardiac MRI
  •  Cardiac catheterization - diagnostic and interventional
  •  Arrhythmia services - electrocardiograms, Holter  monitors, pacemakers, electrophysiology studies, and ablation therapy
  •  Preventive cardiology - cholesterol/lipids, hypertension, and exercise stress tests
  •  Adult congenital heart disease program
  •  Pulmonary hypertension program
  •  Fetal cardiology
  •  Cardiac failure

The following information may be required on the referral form. See specific guidelines for data needed for a referral.

  •  EKG
  •  Echocardiogram with doppler and color flow
  •  Fetal echocardiogram
  •  Holter
  •  Event monitor with transtelephonic recordings
  •  Stress test
  •  Pulse ox
  •  Lab work
  •  Chest x-ray
  •  Cardiac catheterization

Please send results of any previous tests.

Cardiac Surgery

The Division of Cardiac Surgery has dedicated pediatric and congenital cardiovascular surgeons performing palliative and corrective procedures for newborns, infants, children, and adults. Procedures performed include the entire range of congenital heart disease from the simplest to the most complex problems. Each patient is cared for by a pediatric cardiac anesthesiologist during surgery. Postoperative care is provided by a highly trained staff with special expertise in cardiac intensive care in the dedicated Cardiac Intensive Care Unit. 

Diagnosis/Symptom Initial Work-Up Referral When Data Needed
Heart Murmur History & physical, 4-extremity BP Any abnormality or concern H&P, BP
Cyanosis History & physical, 4-extremity BP, pulse oximetry Any abnormality or concern H&P, BP, O2 sat if available
Palpitations History & physical, family history Any abnormality or concern, exercise-associated symptoms H&P, family history
Chest Pains History & physical, family history Any abnormality or concern, exercise-associated symptoms, Non-sharp chest pain H&P, family history
Syncope History & physical, family history Any abnormality or concern, exercise-associated symptoms, Concerning family history H&P, family history
Dizziness History & physical, family history Any abnormality or concern, exercise-associated symptoms, Concerning family history H&P, family history
Hypercholesterol
History & physical, family history, Lipid profile
Any abnormality or concern, concerning family history
H&P, Family history, relevant lab data from patient and affected family members
Family history of heart disease History & physical, family history Any abnormality or concern, concerning family history Parents and siblings, ECGs and other, relevant data, when available

Download a pdf of the Cardiology referral guidelines. 

Jeanne Ricks' Story

Jeanne Ricks

Jeanne Ricks, BSN, MS, RN, NE-BC, Director of Outpatient Nursing and Ambulatory Services in Children's National's Heart Institute, said she was meant to be a nurse.

Read More of Jeanne Ricks' Story