Why choose our Pediatric Heart Center (PHC)?
One of the main elements to achieve excellence in patient care in highly specialized and complex areas of medicine, such as pediatric cardiology and cardiac surgery, is the ability to create units capable of serving a large number of patients annually. This allows the development of the necessary and optimal experience and knowledge in the group of doctors, nurses and other health professionals involved in patient care. In the private sector, this can hardly be achieved, because the percentage of population that has access to insurance is relatively low, and consequently the number of surgeries performed is small.
Therefore, regarding highly specialized areas such as pediatric cardiology, most of the population in Mexico is cared for in public hospitals with their limitations in quality of care. However, in our program located in CM-ABC Observatorio, and thanks to the alliance with public hospitals and with the support of Kardias A.C., we attend around 100 patients per year, much higher than any other private hospital, with quality standards typical of a hospital in this sector, which has allowed us to generate a great experience in the team, and to maintain a very low mortality rate, comparable to that of the best heart centers in the world.
All of our patients are managed by a multidisciplinary team of specialists in cardiology, cardiovascular surgery, echocardiography, hemodynamics, electrophysiology, and pediatric cardiovascular intensive care, as well as by nursing, psychology, and social work personnel.
All cases, those that will be treated surgically and those that can be treated with interventional techniques, are analyzed, and discussed in a multidisciplinary medical/surgical session to offer the patient the best treatment possible.
At the PHC we treat patients with congenital heart disease of all levels of complexity. For the simplest and most common, such as Ventricular Septal Defect, Atrial Septal Defect, and Patent Ductus Arteriosus, it has been possible to maintain results without mortality, with a very low rate of morbidity (complications) and very short hospital stay, which has significantly reduced costs.
For more complex heart diseases such as the complete auroventricular canal defect, the transposition of the large vessels, the correction of the hypoplasia of the aortic arch, or the Glenn and Fontan procedures for the management of the univentricular heart, it has also been possible to maintain very low mortalities and results superior to those of any other unit in the country.
Finally, for more complex heart diseases, such as left ventricular hypoplasia and other forms of univentricular heart, treated with surgeries such as the Norwood procedure or the Damus/Kaye/Stansel procedure, and for other very complex heart diseases treated in the neonatal stage, the multidisciplinary group of the ABC-Kardias Pediatric Heart Center has been the only one in the country with consistent favorable results.
Our program is the only one in Mexico with audited medical-surgical results. For eight years, the program has participated in the International Quality Improvement Collaborative (IQIC), a database managed by Boston Children's Hospital, a tool that has been essential to carry out strict quality controls.
We also participate in other international projects focused on information transparency, such as the “ICHOM” (International Consortium for Health Outcomes Measurement) and the “WDPCHS” (World Database for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery). The information obtained in the databases of these initiatives allows us to affirm that the surgical mortality of PHC ABC-Kardias (2.86%, in 2012-2019) is lower than that of the aggregate of other low and middle income countries that contribute their data to the IQIC (4.4% in 2018), even though the complexity of the cases operated in our center, globally, is even higher, and which is comparable to the average reported by hospitals in the United States (2.8%, in 2015-2018, reported by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, or STS). Our databases also allow us to clearly inform patients or relatives about the prognoses of the treatments, based on the analysis of more than 600 surgeries performed in the PHC since its creation in 2012.
The ABC-Kardias Pediatric Heart Center offers its patients state-of-the-art facilities equipped with state-of-the-art technology:
- Five intensive care beds
- Four intermediate care beds
- Exclusive operating room for pediatric cardiac surgery
- Exclusive waiting room for patients’ relatives
- Hemodynamics and electrophysiology room
- Specialized and equipped offices for the diagnosis and care of heart diseases in pediatric patients
With the objective of reaching the highest standards in the quality of patient care, the Program established since its creation an academic alliance with Texas Children's Hospital, currently listed as the best high specialty center in pediatric cardiology in the United States.
This alliance has allowed us to establish, with said hospital, joint visits to the cardiovascular intensive care unit and discussion of management strategies for the most complex cases, through a telemedicine system, in addition to establishing a continuous training program for the multidisciplinary team abroad.
We develop care protocols for girls and boys with congenital heart diseases that place us at the level of the best centers of excellence in the world.
Patients and relatives
At the Pediatric Heart Center, we care about the well-being of the whole family. The diagnosis of a heart disease is not an easy matter to handle emotionally, and it brings important changes in the lives of all members, not just the patient’s.
Terms you will hear in intensive care unit
- Central venous catheter: A very thin tube (catheter), placed inside the heart, that is used to evaluate heart function as well as to give medicine.
- Arterial line: a thin tube (catheter) placed in an artery in the wrist or groin, that allows continuous monitoring of the force with which the heart is expelling blood.
- Blood gasses: blood sample that reports lung and heart function.
Saturation: a monitor that is worn on a finger, foot or hand with which the amount of oxygen in the blood is continuously measured.
- Mechanical ventilator: a machine that performs the function of the lungs until children wake up and can breathe normally.
- Pleural drainage: this is a tube that is placed through a small incision in the skin of the chest to drain fluid that may collect around the lung after surgery.
- Urinary catheter: tube that is placed in the bladder to measure the amount of urine and thus the kidneys’ function.
- Pacemaker cables: these are thin cables that are placed over the heart through the chest at the end of the surgery; in case of an abnormal rhythm, these are used to give the heart a normal rhythm, once they are not required they are withdrawn.
- Transfusions: blood transfusions are necessary for heart surgery. All blood donations are meticulously studied to rule out that an infection can be transmitted through them such as HIV or hepatitis, among many others. Blood is not always available, so donations are required to replace the blood used in each procedure.