Kansas City,
08:00 AM

Healio: Updated paradigm measures frailty in children with heart conditions

By Darlene Dobkowski

Children with heart disease had significant differences in all the domains of frailty, which included weakness, slowness, height and weight, exhaustion and physical activity levels compared with children without the condition, according to a presentation at Cardiology 2018.

“We always knew subjectively that these kids will probably be slower, probably be weak, probably be tired more quickly, but we were surprised with how slower they were, how quickly they got tired and how much less activity they would do as compared to other kids,” Chaitanya Panchangam, MBBS, cardiology fellow at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, told Cardiology Today.

Researchers analyzed data from 34 children (mean age, 12 years; 62% boys) with at least one of the following: HF, status-post Fontan and pulmonary hypertension. Patients were age- and sex-matched to healthy controls (n = 22; mean age, 12 years; 59% boys).

Frailty phenotype was measured using methods developed for children such as 6-minute walk test, hand grip strength, physical activity questionnaire and body measurements.

“Kids with all these chronic heart diseases like Fontan, heart failure or pulmonary hypertension, we all know they’re sick,” Panchangam said in an interview. “We don’t have a great tool that can assess for global frailty. That’s why we were interested in checking this tool to see first if we can even make some adjustments in the tool that was described … and adapt it to the pediatric population.”


Read the full article via Healio.

Learn more about the Heart Center at Children's Mercy.