Texas Children’s Heart Center is home to one of the nation’s few programs dedicated exclusively to clinical care, education and research in pediatric cardiovascular anesthesia.
Children who undergo heart procedures here are monitored by a cardiovascular anesthesiology team that specializes in pediatric congenital heart disease.
The primary role of our cardiac anesthesiology team is to administer
anesthetics to ensure your child is asleep and has no awareness during
surgery. Our team monitors more than 20 different functions of the
child’s body including blood pressure, oxygen saturation in the blood,
your child's temperature, heart function and the levels of anesthetic
The day before surgery, you will meet your child’s anesthesiologist, who will explain in detail the anesthetic procedures. For most surgeries, your child is relaxed before surgery with a sedative given orally or through an intravenous line (IV).Your child then goes into deep sleep under a flavored general anesthetic, which he or she selects the day before surgery. Your child receives an additional anesthetic through an IV, by inhaling anesthetic gas or a combination of both. After the child is asleep, his or her breathing is assisted by a breathing tube placed through the nose or mouth into the lungs.
The anesthesiologist monitors your child from the preoperative evaluation until the child is stabilized in the cardiovascular intensive care unit (CVICU) after surgery. The presence of the anesthesiology team ensures every patient who comes into cardiac surgery at the Heart Center is cared for by an anesthesiologist with lengthy specialty training and expertise in congenital heart disease.