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Pediatric Cardiology Specialist's Opinions Toward the Acceptability of Comfort Care for Congenital Heart Disease

Journal title
Pediatric cardiology
Publication year
Swanson, T. M.; Patel, A.; Baxter, A. J.; Morris, S. A.; Maskatia, S. A.; Lantos, J. D.

In order to�evaluate physicians' willingness to seek legal action to mandate surgery when parents refuse surgery for various congenital heart lesions,�we surveyed pediatric cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons at 4 children's hospitals. We asked whether physicians would support parental refusal of surgery for specific heart defects and, if not, whether they would seek legal action to mandate surgery. We then analyzed associations between physicians' willingness to mandate surgery and national operative mortality rates for each lesion. We surveyed 126 cardiologists and 9 cardiac surgeons at four tertiary referral centers. Overall response rate was 77%. Greater than 70% of physicians would seek legal action and mandate surgery�for the following lesions: ventricular septal defect, coarctation of the aorta, complete atrioventricular canal, transposition of the great arteries, tetralogy of Fallot, and unobstructed total anomalous pulmonary venous return. Surgery for all of these lesions has reported mortality rates of?

Research abstracts