Neurodevelopmental Program

Research shows that children with heart conditions are at risk for motor and language delays, as well as learning problems. The American Heart Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that children with some heart conditions, such as those needing surgery in the first months of life, be seen in a structured cardiac neurodevelopmental program. At the Children’s Sibley Heart Center, our team of experts can identify and help your child work through any developmental issues. We provide:

  • Comprehensive assessment of child's development
  • Experts with extensive experience working with children with heart disease
  • Assistance with school planning and communication with the school systems

Infants to preschool

You and your child will meet with a team of professionals to assess and monitor his progress. This team will include a physical therapist, occupational therapist and speech-language therapist. Developmental testing will help assess your child’s thinking skills and motor skills, and we will ask you some questions about your child’s background. Based on the results of this evaluation, we will recommend a course of action to support your child’s specific developmental needs.

School age to young adults

Your child will meet with a pediatric neuropsychologist to complete written, oral and picture-based tests. The neuropsychologist will review medical and school records, and meet with you to learn about your child’s family and social background. We will also provide forms for your child’s teacher to fill out forms about learning, attention, and behavior. The results from this interview and assessment will help us make specific recommendations to support your child’s learning. School consultation is available as well.

Our multidisciplinary team includes experts in cardiology, neuropsychology and rehabilitation therapy. They work with together with you and other specialists as needed to provide complete developmental care from infancy through early adulthood for your child with a heart condition.