Pediatric Cardiology | UC Davis Health


Pediatric Cardiology

We provide complete care for children’s heart conditions. From diagnosis before birth to advanced treatments and emotional support, your child’s heart is safe with us.

Medically reviewed on June 21, 2023.

Young boy with male health care provider listening to his heart with a stethoscope

The Latest Pediatric Cardiology Advances for a Heart-Healthy Future

We provide the latest treatments in a family-friendly healing environment. Your child benefits from the expertise of a team of children’s cardiologists. Their common goal? Ensuring your child’s health, developmental and emotional needs are all taken care of.

Our Difference

Complete Pediatric Heart Care

From pregnancy through adolescence, we provide comprehensive heart care in our Pediatric Heart Center. This care includes surgical treatments in our level 1 Children’s Surgery Center. We are among the few hospitals nationwide with this designation, meaning our patients experience the highest level of care possible.

Team-Based Approach

Our pediatric cardiology team includes pediatric heart surgeons, pediatric and fetal cardiologists, anesthesiologists, respiratory therapists and nurses. They work together to ensure your child receives thorough, coordinated care.

Healing, Family-Friendly Atmosphere

Our large, single rooms have TVs, sleeping sofas and chairs for loved ones. Children also have access to stress-relieving activities involving music, art and play therapy.


What Is Pediatric Cardiology?

Pediatric cardiology is the medical specialty that diagnoses and treats children’s heart problems. Your child may need to see a pediatric cardiologist to rule out or treat a suspected heart condition.

Our pediatric cardiologists are experienced at treating heart problems like congenital heart disease (heart irregularities children are born with) and arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats). They also partner with other pediatric specialists to deliver innovative care that considers all your child’s needs. 

Specialties Related to Pediatric Cardiology:

Fetal Cardiology

Our fetal cardiologists use advanced technology to diagnose heart problems before birth. Our specialists can find heart anomalies as early as 12 weeks into pregnancy.

Learn more about our fetal cardiology services
Pediatric Cardiac Electrophysiology

Our pediatric electrophysiologists use minimally invasive methods to treat irregular heartbeats in children. Doctors use thin, flexible tubes called catheters that access your child’s heart through a blood vessel. Minimally invasive treatments often result in easier recoveries and shorter hospital stays.

Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery

Our cardiothoracic surgeons repair the full range of congenital heart problems and other heart conditions.

Pediatric Interventional Cardiology

When possible, we use cardiac catheterization to diagnose and treat heart conditions. During cardiac catheterization, physicians access your child’s heart using a catheter and tiny incisions.

Read about cardiac catheterization
Complex Pediatric Lipid Disorders Clinic

We have one of Northern California’s only clinics for pediatric lipid disorders. Our new clinic helps lower future heart disease and stroke risk in children with lipid disorders. We care for children with high cholesterol, triglycerides and lipoprotein (a) levels. We also treat children with diabetes and kidney disease.

Learn about our pediatric lipid disorders clinic

Causes and Risk Factors of Heart Conditions in Children

Sometimes children are born with irregularities (anomalies) in their heart’s structure. These structural problems happen when your child’s heart develops — most often for unknown reasons. Infections, lifestyle habits and other medical conditions can also affect how your child’s heart functions.

Risk factors for children’s heart conditions include:


Sometimes, genes that increase the likelihood of congenital heart disease are passed down through families.

Infections and Other Illnesses

Rarely, a child’s immune system may attack healthy heart tissues to destroy a perceived threat. For example, Kawasaki disease causes blood vessel inflammation. Untreated strep infections are the most common causes of this type of heart damage.

Learn more about Kawasaki disease
Lifestyle Habits

Just like with adults, poor nutrition, lack of exercise and secondhand smoke can cause buildup and blockages in your child’s arteries. Medical conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity increase this risk.

Exposures During Pregnancy

Certain conditions and their treatments may increase your risk of having a child with congenital heart disease. These issues include phenylketonuria (PKU), seizure disorders, insulin-dependent diabetes, lupus, rubella and depression.

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Awards and Recognitions
USNWR Best Hospital badge

Ranked among the nation’s best hospitals

A U.S. News & World Report best hospital in cancer, cardiology, heart & vascular surgery, diabetes & endocrinology, ENT, geriatrics, neurology & neurosurgery, obstetrics & gynecology, and pulmonology & lung surgery.

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US News & World Report best Children’s Hospital badge

Ranked among the nation’s best children’s hospitals

A U.S. News & World Report best children’s hospital in diabetes & endocrinology, nephrology, and orthopedics*. (*Together with Shriners Children’s)

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USNWR best regional hospital badge

Ranked Sacramento’s #1 hospital

Ranked Sacramento’s #1 hospital by U.S. News, and high-performing in COPD, colon cancer surgery, diabetes, heart attack, heart failure, hip fracture, hip replacement, kidney failure, leukemia, lymphoma & myeloma, lung cancer surgery, ovarian cancer surgery, pneumonia, prostate cancer surgery, stroke, TAVR, uterine cancer surgery, gastroenterology & GI surgery, and orthopedics.

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Magnet designation badge

The nation’s highest nursing honor

UC Davis Medical Center has received Magnet® recognition, the nation’s highest honor for nursing excellence.

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Chime acute badge

“Most Wired” for acute care

UC Davis Health has been recognized as a level 10 out of 10 in the Digital Health “Most Wired” program from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). The honor recognizes excellence in using technology to improve the delivery of care.

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Chime ambulatory badge

“Most Wired” for ambulatory care

UC Davis Health has been recognized as a level 10 out of 10 in the Digital Health “Most Wired” program from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). The honor recognizes excellence in using technology to improve the delivery of care.

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NCI badge

World-class cancer care

One of ~56 U.S. cancer centers designated “comprehensive” by the National Cancer Institute.

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A leader in health care equality

For the 11th consecutive year, UC Davis Medical Center has been recognized as a “Leader in LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality.”

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