Pediatric Cardiomyopathy Program

If your child has been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy or carries a risk of developing cardiomyopathy, we are here to offer expert diagnosis, ongoing treatment, and support. By catching and treating cardiomyopathy early, we can control your child’s symptoms, slow or stop its progress, and avoid complications. Our ultimate goal is to help you and your child live well with cardiomyopathy. Our multidisciplinary team of experts provide care for children with all types of cardiomyopathy from infancy to age 18 and into early adulthood.

What is cardiomyopathy?

Cardiomyopathy is a progressive chronic disease due to heart muscle issues that cause the heart to become unusually weak or stiff, making it difficult for the heart to pump blood efficiently to the rest of the body. There are several types of cardiomyopathy, each with its own symptoms. In cases where the heart isn’t able to pump blood well, children with cardiomyopathy may have pale, sweaty skin and feel fatigue, shortness of breath, chest pain, irregular or rapid heartbeat, dizziness, or fainting, and may be irritable. Some children may have no symptoms at all. Others may have a normal heart but be at risk of developing cardiomyopathy over time. A small group of children may have symptoms of advanced heart failure or serious arrhythmias (abnormal heart beats). Childhood cardiomyopathy can occur at any age, but it’s most likely to present itself in a child’s first year of life or during teenage years.

Why Stanford Medicine Children’s Health for pediatric cardiomyopathy

At Stanford Medicine Children’s Health, your child will receive holistic care from an experienced team with expertise in managing care for children with cardiomyopathy. Our aim is to empower your child and your family to live your best lives, despite this chronic disease.

Pediatric Cardiomyopathy Program highlights:

  • Multidisciplinary care. We bring together pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, genetic counselors, pediatric psychologists, dietitians, nurses, social workers, and other specialists from Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford to provide well-rounded care for your child and family. With so many experts under one roof, we can provide your child with the highest-quality care available for all types of cardiomyopathies.
  • Proven, accredited experts in cardiomyopathy. As the largest cardiomyopathy referral program in California, we follow 800+ children with cardiomyopathy from across the nation. We are a Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation Accredited Center of Care, meeting the highest standards of care for cardiomyopathy. Our program is also a Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy Association Center of Excellence.
  • Care for related medical conditions that affect the heart. We work closely with our neuromuscular team, a certified Duchenne Care Center, to care for children with muscular dystrophy, which can damage the heart. We also treat hearts damaged by cancer treatments and children with genetic or metabolic conditions that may cause cardiomyopathy.
  • Treatment for advanced heart failure and transplants. If your child needs surgery or a heart transplant, our team has performed more heart surgeries and heart transplants than most hospitals across the country. Our heart failure and heart transplant program team (PACT) is highly experienced in working with children with advanced cardiomyopathy who experience heart failure, including those who need a ventricular assist device (VAD) to support them as they await heart transplantation.
  • National leaders in cardiomyopathy research. Our physician-scientists are performing innovative cardiomyopathy research and working with international research organizations so that your child may be able to receive new treatments and participate in clinical trials.