Interventional Cardiology Program

The doctors in our Pediatric and Adult Congenital Interventional Cardiology Program specialize in cardiac catheterization, a safe and commonly performed procedure for diagnosing and treating many heart problems in children and adults. Our doctors frequently use cardiac catheterization procedures to repair problems that once required open-heart surgery.

During cardiac catheterization, the doctor inserts a catheter (a small, thin, flexible tube) through a tiny incision in the groin or neck, then threads it through blood vessels to reach the heart using X-ray guidance. Through these catheters doctors measure pressures and collect blood samples for analysis. Some specialized catheters even allow doctors to fix heart problems, including closing holes in the heart or replacing heart valves

Children have smaller hearts and blood vessels than adults, and they require different sedation and monitoring because of their size, age and ability to cooperate. The cardiologists, nurses and anesthesiologists on our interventional cardiology team are specially trained in the unique needs of children, including infants born prematurely or at low birth weights.

Here at UCSF, you and your child have access to the latest cardiac techniques and technologies, as well as a variety of support services to help you navigate your care. Our team has been instrumental in developing new interventional heart therapies for children and adults with congenital heart disease, and we are actively evaluating additional promising treatments in clinical trials.

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    Awards & recognition

    • us news ranked in 10 specialites badge 2020-2021

      Ranked among the nation's best in 10 specialties

    • us news cardiology and heart surgery ranking badge 2020-2021

      One of the nation’s best in cardiology & heart surgery

    Plan your visit

    Preparing for your appointment

    What to Bring

    • Photo I.D.
    • Health insurance card
    • Insurance authorization, if required
    • Doctor's referral, if required
    • Recent test results related to your child's condition
    • List of medications, including dosages, plus any your child is allergic to
    • List of questions you may have
    • Device or paper for taking notes

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    Your Stay

    We offer valuable information to help you plan for your child's upcoming hospital stay. Find out about food services, family accommodations and more.

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    Your Child's Care Team

    Our doctors, nurses, child life specialists and other providers have special training to care for children. Meet your child's care team.

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    Interpreter Services & Communication Assistance

    Interpreter services in many languages and TDDs are available for families that need help communicating with care teams. Here's how to access them.

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    Support services

    Child Life Services

    Activity rooms, pet therapy and more to help kids feel at home.

    Child Life

    Certified child life specialists ease the stress and anxiety of childhood illness through therapeutic play, schooling and family-focused support.

    Family Amenities

    Family-friendly amenities help you relax and take care of yourself while staying close to your child. We offer lounges, kitchens, showers, breastfeeding rooms and more.

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    Social Services

    Social workers ease the effect of illness, injury and hospitalization on your family with counseling and assistance to help you navigate the challenges.

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    Activity Rooms

    Activity rooms offer a relaxed environment for children of all ages. Features include a playroom, digital arts studio and teen lounge. Find out more.

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    Art Therapy

    Art therapy helps kids and families express themselves, making it easier to cope with pediatric health issues. Group and bedside services are available.

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    Music Therapy Program

    Board-certified music therapists help kids cope with illness and the feelings that come with it. Find out about group activities and bedside therapy.

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    School Program

    Our schoolroom services and individual learning programs help children hospitalized at UCSF continue their education and get ready to return to school.

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    School Re-Entry Program

    After hospitalization, we help kids return to school by educating staff and students about their needs and recommending needed accommodations. Read more.

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    Individual Playtime & Instruction

    If your child can't be around other kids for medical reasons, you can sign up for private sessions in our activity and school rooms. Find out how.

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    Interpreter Services & Communication Assistance

    Interpreter services in many languages and TDDs are available for families that need help communicating with care teams. Here's how to access them.

    Family Resource Center

    We help families cope with the challenges of childhood illness and hospitalization in a relaxing environment where parents can get a much-needed break.

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    Parent Support Program

    Weekly activities, including knitting, scrapbooking, chair massage and more, help family caregivers get a much-needed break. Find out more.

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    Patient Relations

    Patient relations reps and nursing supervisors are here to answer questions and address concerns. Learn about your rights, how to reach us and more.

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    Spiritual Care

    Chaplains help UCSF patients, families and staff cope with the spiritual and emotional challenges of childhood illness. Learn more.

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    International Services

    If you're coming to UCSF from outside the U.S., we coordinate your child's appointments and provide other helpful services. Here's how to get started.

    Feeling at home

    From bedside bingo to therapy dogs, we're here to help kids smile and feel more like themselves.

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