24-Hour Crisis Hotline: (877)SAFEGBC or (877)723-3422 Mental Health & Substance Abuse Issues

6502 Nursery Drive, Suite 100
Victoria, TX 77904
(361)575-0611
(800)421-8825

Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest News
Coping Support Assists Parents of Hospitalized ChildrenYoung Breakfast Skippers Lack Vital NutrientsA Violent Environment Can Wreck Kids' GradesSleep Duration Inversely Linked to Risk Markers of T2DM in KidsDo Pets Really Boost Kids' Health?Rotavirus Vaccine Cuts U.S. Peds Gastroenteritis HospitalizationsRotavirus Vaccine Cut Kids' Hospitalization, Medical CostsBy Age 12, Poor May Show Signs of Heart Risks AheadHealth Tip: Childhood Obesity Can Trigger Adult ProblemsDecline in Kids' Ear Infections Linked to Pneumococcal VaccinePicky Eater? It Might Just Be Your Child's PersonalityPrenatal Exposure to Certain Flame Retardants Linked to Lower IQsHealth Tip: Protect Your Kids From LeadKnow the Signs of ConcussionSurgeons Warn of Trampolines' Down SideVision Problems Can Harm Kids' Development, GradesTime to Catch Up on Reading, Writing … and Routine ShotsU.S. Kids Overdosing on Dietary SupplementsJust a Few Vaccine Refusers Could Endanger ManyDoes Your Child Really Have a Food Allergy?Donor-Sperm Kids No Different From Their Peers: StudyHigh-Dose Vitamin D May Not Curb Kids' ColdsHealth Tip: Check the Water Before SwimmingDespite Warnings, Kids Are Still Dying in Hot CarsLink for Maternal Antidepressant, Kids' Brain Health QuestionedToo Few Children Get EpiPen When Needed: StudyHealth Tip: Take Care of Kids Exercising in Summer HeatHow to Prevent Future Couch PotatoesSugar Intake During Pregnancy Tied to Allergy in OffspringThe Neighborhood Sandbox: A Breeding Ground for GermsRisks Linked to Soft Contacts No Higher for Children Than AdultsSmoking On the Rise in Movies Aimed at Young: StudyBullying Takes Financial Toll on U.S. School DistrictsSwimming Lessons: For Starters, Watch Out for Germs in the WaterHow to Keep Your Kids Out of the ER This SummerIs Your Child's 'Penicillin Allergy' Real?Health Tip: When Adults Offer Kids FoodHealth Tip: Practice Drowning Prevention at HomeCommunity Intervention May Aid Fight Against Childhood ObesityGetting Kids in the Habit of Healthy EatingHealth Tip: Rewarding Kids Without FoodDo Older Dads Produce Brainy Boys?USPSTF Concludes Screening for Obesity Beneficial for ChildrenFirearms Kill or Wound 7,000 U.S. Children AnnuallyGuns Kill or Wound 7,000 U.S. Kids a Year: ReportTime for Some Summer Sun Safety TipsHealth Tip: Applying Sunscreen on ChildrenMany Preemies Don't Struggle in SchoolHealth Tip: When Your Child Won't Eat LunchResearchers Target Zolmitriptan Dosing for Pediatric Migraine
Questions and AnswersLinks
Related Topics

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses
Child Development & Parenting: Infants (0-2)
Child Development & Parenting: Early (3-7)

Learning Issues Common in Kids With Heart Defects: Study

HealthDay News
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Feb 21st 2017

new article illustration

TUESDAY, Feb. 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Children born with heart defects seem to be at increased risk of learning problems in elementary school, a new study suggests.

And those with less severe heart abnormalities may not receive needed assistance, the study of third graders from North Carolina found.

Among more than 9,000 students, children born with a heart defect were 24 percent more likely to not meet end-of-year standards in reading or math, compared to those with healthy hearts, the researchers determined.

"Schools should be aware that children with heart defects can have learning difficulties, even many years after their heart defect is supposedly 'fixed,' " said study lead author Dr. Matthew Oster. He's a pediatric cardiologist at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

Examining education records and birth data, the researchers compared more than 2,800 children born with heart defects -- so-called "congenital" heart defects -- with more than 6,300 kids with healthy hearts. All completed third grade between 2006 and 2012.

Besides the academic gap, the researchers found that children with severe heart defects were 46 percent more likely to get special education support than those with less severe defects.

The study was published Feb. 21 in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

It's not clear why kids with heart defects might have difficulty in school.

Most theories relate to severe defects, Oster said in a journal news release. These include factors such as surgical problems, prenatal brain development, time in an intensive care unit, or degree of oxygen deficiency, he noted.

Children with milder defects usually don't have these risk factors. But all kids born with a heart defect may share a genetic risk of problems with brain development, according to the researchers.

The reason children with milder abnormalities are less likely to receive special education services may be due to lack of awareness, Oster suggested.

Physicians need to understand that all children with heart defects might face learning challenges, Oster said.

"Doctors should consider formal neurocognitive evaluations when appropriate," Oster said. They also should ask their families how the kids are doing in school, he added.

More information

The American Heart Association has more about congenital heart defects.