Heart Failure Program

The Heart Institute at Children's Hospital Los Angeles provides multidisciplinary care to children with severe heart failure of all causes. Our team uses cutting-edge medical and surgical treatments that are customized to the needs of every patient. A modern mixture of medical treatments are used, complimented by advanced pacemaker technologies, mechanical support, advanced valve surgery and heart transplantation when needed. 

Doctors Alan Lewis, MD, Jacqueline Szmuszkovicz, MD, and Jondavid Menteer, MD, provide specialized care for failing hearts, together with heart rhythm specialists, cardiac surgeons and specialized nurses. Patients with cardiomyopathies and/or heart failure may be referred for consultation, diagnosis and management. Comprehensive evaluation of cardiomyopathy may include metabolic and genetic evaluations as well as medical management of heart failure. Patients with end-stage cardiac disease may be referred for evaluation to the Cardiothoracic Transplant Program.

Mechanical Support Program

When a heart is so sick that even the most intense intravenous medicines cannot make it pump well, sometimes a machine can help keep blood flowing in the body. These machines can be used temporarily to help the heart get better, or to help a patient stay alive while waiting for a heart transplant. We use use several different types of mechanical support to help our sickest patients, including Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) and ventricular assist devices (VADs).