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Closed & Open Heart Surgery

Closed heart surgeries are usually performed on the major arteries of the heart while the heart continues to pump.

Operations that require more complicated work on internal areas such as valves or septa of the heart require open heart surgery. These procedures are often more technically complicated and require the use of a heart-bypass lung machine which supports the body’s vital organs while the intra-cardiac repair work is being done.

Some of the more common pediatric cardiac surgeries we perform include:

  • Norwood-Sano repair for hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS), a severe congenital heart condition in which the left side of the heart is underdeveloped
  • Modified Damus-Kaye-Stansel (DKS) procedure, an alternative to the Norwood procedure available for some single ventricle patients
  • Repair of atrioventricular septal defect, a complex, congenital heart problem that involves septal defects and valve malformations
  • Repair of aortic coarctation or arch abnormality, a congenital heart condition involving a narrowing of the aorta
  • Repair of tetralogy of Fallot, a condition of several related congenital issues that occur due to abnormal development of the fetal heart during the first eight weeks of pregnancy
  • Pulmonary Atresia, a congenital heart condition affecting the pulmonary valve
  • Repair of truncus arteriosus, a rare heart defect that's present at birth
  • Arterial switch repair for transposition, an improper connection of the great vessels that take blood away from the heart to the lungs or body
  • Complete heart and blood vessel repair in newborn babies
  • Repair or replacement of cardiac valves  
  • Surgical treatment for adult congenital heart disease
    o Our surgeons are experienced and skilled in cardiac surgical procedures involving young adults and adults with congenital heart disease.
    o Children’s has forged an important relationship with the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) for the care of this growing and often complex patient population.

Cardiac surgeries can be performed on newborn infants, even those who are born prematurely.

  • In most cases, age and size do not dictate timing of surgery; whether your child needs an operation is determined by how serious or potentially life-threatening the underlying condition is.