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Pediatr Cardiol. 2007 Jul-Aug;28(4):255-62. Epub 2007 May 5.

Psychosocial outcomes for preschool children and families after surgery for complex congenital heart disease.

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Department of Pediatrics, Medical College of Wisconsin, and Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Herma Heart Center, Milwaukee, WI 53226, USA.


The purpose of the current study was to assess the psychosocial outcomes of preschool-aged survivors (ages 3-6 years) of hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS; n=13) and transposition of the great arteries (TGA; n=13). Parents completed the following measures: Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory, Impact on the Family Scale, Parenting Stress Index, Parent Behavior Checklist, and Child Behavior Checklist. Quality of life scores did not differ from those of healthy controls. Parents of children with HLHS reported more negative impact of the child's illness on the family and more parenting stress than parents of children with TGA. Parents of both groups of children were more permissive in their parenting style than parents of healthy controls. Children with HLHS had higher rates of attention and externalizing behavior problems than children with TGA. The results highlight the need for practitioners working with these children and families to ask about parental stress, family functioning, and behavioral expectations for the child in the context of routine medical/cardiac follow-up.

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