Our Services

Our highly specialized CEAL team is here every step of the way to care for your child and support your family. In order to determine which innovative procedures and therapies will help your child achieve optimal health, we start with an in-depth evaluation and diagnostic and imaging tests.

In-depth evaluation

When children are transferred to Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, most are cared for in our advanced Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit, where they receive highly specialized care. Here’s what you can expect:

  • When you arrive, we will bring a team of specialists to your child’s bedside to evaluate his or her precise needs. We’ll run diagnostic tests, consider the size and function of your child’s heart and lungs, and decide which therapies will improve your child’s health.
  • During this process, you will meet our team of heart and lung specialists, who will help you understand our recommendations for your child. Your child’s care team is designed to include experts in exactly what your child needs. For example, if he or she has heart failure, we partner with our Pediatric Advanced Cardiac Therapies (PACT) Program.
  • You are a part of our care team, and we value your input throughout your child’s care journey.

If your child is a candidate for Potts shunt surgery, he or she may not need to be admitted for evaluation and can be seen in our clinic. In this case, we schedule an appointment at our clinic, where we evaluate your child and run needed tests. From there, we share our findings with your child’s cardiologist or pulmonologist and schedule your child’s hospital stay for the surgery.

Diagnostic and imaging tests

Your child may have a series of tests to help us decide on an ideal care approach. Tests include:

  • Echocardiogram. Provides a view of the chambers and valves in your child’s heart.
  • Cardiac MRI. Magnetic resonance imaging provides detailed images of the heart.
  • Cardiac catheterization. Measures the pressures and blood flow within your child’s heart and lungs.
  • CT angiography. A computed tomography (CT) scan combined with a special dye to show blood vessels in your child’s chest, abdomen, or pelvis.
  • Lung function tests. Shows how well your child’s lungs are functioning.
  • Additional tests for lung transplant evaluation. These may include a DEXA scan for bone density, pH/impedance probe for reflux in the esophagus, or V/Q scan to measure air and blood flow in your child’s lungs, among others.
  • Bloodwork. Routine and specialized bloodwork chemistry tests.

Family-centered care and support

Along with our doctors, our nurse practitioners, social worker, and transplant coordinators are here to answer any questions you may have. We help you navigate your child’s hospital stay, provide emotional support, and help with logistics, such as transportation and housing. We welcome you to take advantage of Packard Children’s extensive patient and family services. These include child life specialists who help your child cope with hospitalizations.

If your child requires a complex heart surgery or interventional cardiac catheterization procedure, ask about our Heart Center Coordination Program, which can provide your family with a cardiac nurse navigator to guide you through your child’s care journey at Stanford Children’s. The program is currently supporting pediatric patients with certain complex heart needs