Single Ventricle Program

Our comprehensive pediatric Single Ventricle Program (SVP) is designed to meet the unique needs of children born with a single heart ventricle. We are the only program of its kind on the West Coast to provide multidisciplinary, holistic care that optimizes health and well-being, empowering children with single ventricle anomalies to live their fullest lives.

With single ventricle anomalies, one of two heart ventricles—the left and right lower chambers of the heart—do not develop properly, making it difficult for blood to flow from the heart to the lungs and the rest of the body. Single ventricle anomalies are congenital heart diseases (inherited) and are usually diagnosed during pregnancy or soon after birth. Depending on the type of single ventricle defect, newborns may have a weak pulse, appear bluish or grayish in color, be lethargic, and have trouble breathing or eating. Cardiac surgery is almost always needed, and we work in tandem with heart surgeons, cardiologists, and pediatricians to help your child thrive.

When you come to see us, you’ll meet with our highly integrated team of single ventricle champions for screening, evaluation, and coordinated care. Our team includes single ventricle experts from pediatric cardiology, hepatology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, neurodevelopmental psychology, school advocacy, nutrition, child psychiatry, and social services. Our efforts complement the care provided by your child’s primary cardiologist and pediatrician. By starting comprehensive treatment early on, we improve survival, promote wellness, and maximize your child’s quality of life.

Why Stanford Medicine Children’s Health for single ventricle care

  • Lifelong care. We provide single ventricle care to children of all ages and stages, from infancy to young adulthood. Our multidisciplinary care is put in motion after Norwood, Glenn, Fontan, and other heart operations.
  • Convenient care in a single visit. Whether you are new to us and seeking screening and diagnostics or seeing us for your child’s annual review, your child will meet with our interdisciplinary team of single ventricle experts and receive a convenient and thorough evaluation, all in one day and in one place at our dedicated Single Ventricle Program clinic. Testing includes neurodevelopmental, heart, liver, gastrointestinal, and endocrine. You’ll leave with a comprehensive care plan that we will carry out in partnership with you and your child’s cardiologist.
  • Customized care for highly complex needs. When your child has specialized needs, we create a custom care team from our hospital’s vast pool of subspecialists. For example, besides our team, your family might meet with experts from heart surgery for single ventricle repair, cardiovascular genetic testing for inherited heart disease, pulmonology for lung conditions, or our Pediatric Advanced Cardiac Therapies (PACT) program for heart failure, ventricular device implantation, or heart transplantation.
  • Caring for the whole child. Our care goes well beyond cardiology to include a suite of services that support all aspects of your child’s health and well-being. For example, our neurodevelopment psychologist maximizes your child’s developmental progress from infancy, our school liaison facilitates a smooth school entry and helps create educational learning plans, our dietitians ensure healthy eating habits, and our social workers connect your family with support networks and services that promote wellness and resiliency.
  • Nationally recognized heart care. If your child needs heart surgery or transplant, know that the Betty Irene Moore Children’s Heart Center at Stanford Medicine Children’s Health is one of the leading pediatric heart centers in the nation with better outcomes than other respected children’s hospitals.