Keeping your Child with CHD Healthy

General Guidelines

  • Thorough hand washing for all caregivers and anyone visiting your home
  • Minimize exposure to crowded areas such as malls, churches, and social gatherings during the months of October through March
  • Eliminate exposure to tobacco smoke

Prevention of Winter Illnesses

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) Prevention
For children under age 2, Palivizumab (Synagis ®) shot starting in October and every month until March. This has been shown to reduce the incidence of RSV and decrease the chance of hospitalization for RSV.

Flu Prevention

For children with CHD above 6 months of age a flu shot in October. If less
than 6 months of age all close contacts should receive the flu shot or live attenuated influenza vaccine (Flumist ®). Any child who has never received the flu vaccine should receive two
doses of the vaccine at least four weeks apart.
Call your Health Care Provider if your child develops any of the following signs and symptoms:

  1. Fever
  2. Coughing
  3. Fast Breathing
  4. Wheezing
  5. Blue or grey color to skin
  6. Trouble eating, drinking, or sleeping

Endocarditis Prevention

Certain children with heart conditions may require antibiotics prior to medical and dental procedures. Talk to your medical care provider about whether your child needs this added protection prior to procedures or tests.