Heart and Vascular Care
Treating the Heart of the Matter
Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health is the only center in Indiana that offers comprehensive evaluation, medical management and surgery for infants and children with heart disease. We provide clinical services to approximately 6,000 outpatients per year and approximately 650 cardiac surgeries. Caring for children with heart problems is one of many specialty areas at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health. With 32 Intensive Care Unit beds and 48 Newborn Intensive Care Unit beds, we are well able to care for the children of Indiana who have heart problems. Our cardiology services for children began in 1950 and are well known both regionally and nationally. We consistently rank in the top 25 for cardiology in the U.S.News & World Report list of Best Children’s Hospitals.
Riley is one of the highest volume pediatric cardiovascular centers in the country, and research shows higher volumes translate to better outcomes. Riley's overall survival rate for cardiovascular surgery is significantly better than the national average. The Riley team is the only group performing pediatric heart transplantation in Indiana and the pediatric cardiac critical care team is the only of its kind in Indiana. The Riley Heart Center offers the full scope of heart-related services and treatment options.
Ranked 22nd in Heart and Vascular Care.
Helping Children Throughout the Midwest
Children who come to us for cardiac care are usually referred by their primary care physician for evaluation because the doctor has noticed something unusual that needs to be evaluated by a specialist. These conditions include heart murmurs, rapid breathing, high blood pressure, infections involving the heart or blood vessels, chest pain, heart rhythm disturbances, fainting episodes and questions about participation in sports. Babies born with heart disease are expertly cared for at Riley at IU Health after being born in other Indiana University Health hospitals, or after being transported here from other hospitals in the region.
A Highly Specialized Pediatric Team
Our board certified pediatric cardiologists are doctors with special training and skill in finding, treating and preventing heart and blood vessel disease in children of all ages, from infancy to young adulthood. Our team also includes pediatric cardiovascular surgeons, clinical nurse specialists and cardiology social workers, all specialists in the care of children.
The Most Advanced Diagnostic Tools
Our pediatric cardiologists use a range of tests to evaluate heart problems. Simple tests include EKG (electrocardiogram), X-ray and blood tests. If more specialized tests are needed, we offer the most sophisticated techniques for diagnosing heart disease in children. These specialized tests include echocardiogram, ambulatory EKG, exercise testing, electrophysiologic testing, radiofrequency ablation and diagnostic and interventional heart catheterization. Our pediatric heart specialists are among the most experienced in the country in heart catheterizations.
Many new methods of care are offered including nitric oxide administration for pulmonary hypertension. This team of experts can provide services using the ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) support unit, as needed in certain life-threatening situations. (ECMO is a machine that provides oxygen support to patients whose heart and lungs are so damaged that the patient cannot provide oxygenation on his or her own.) Riley at IU Health is the only hospital in Indiana that provides the ECMO support unit. Riley is also the only hospital in Indiana to offer ventricular assist devices (VAD) to children who require mechanical assist of cardiac function.
Leaders in Heart Transplantation
IU Health is a leader in heart transplantation for children as well as adults. The first infant heart transplant in Indiana was performed at Riley at IU Health in 1989. The infant heart transplantation program at IU Health is one of only a few such programs in the Midwest.