Transition in cardiology 1: Pediatric patients with congenital heart disease to adulthood

Kenichiro Yamamura, Hazumu Nagata, Ichiro Sakamoto, Hiroyuki Tsutsui, Shouichi Ohga

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

With advances in medical care, the majority of infants and children with chronic diseases are now able to reach adulthood. However, many of them still need special health care because of their original diseases, sequelae, and complications. The transition from the child health care system to the adult health care system is a crucial step for these patients. The goal of transitional care is to maximize the lifelong function and potential of these patients by uninterruptedly providing appropriate health-care services. To achieve this goal, we should (i) coordinate the transfer to adequate medical institutions and departments for adults, (ii) educate patients to improve self-management, and (iii) support the transition to social and welfare services for adults. Transitional care in pediatric cardiology has been a step ahead of such care in other diseases because of the relatively high incidence and the long history of adult congenital heart disease. Education of the patients to establish autonomy reduces dropping out and unexpected hospitalizations and it is the most important part of transitional care. To achieve this goal, we should provide explanations to pediatric patients according to their age and level of understanding from their first visit, rather than waiting until they reach a certain age. Tools for education and readiness checks are also being developed. To achieve a situation in which pediatric patients with chronic disease can take care of their own health and fully utilize their abilities at the growing step, transitional care plays a crucial role not only in pediatric cardiology but also in other subspecialties.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere15096
JournalPediatrics International
Volume64
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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