Assessment and management of feeding difficulties for infants with complex CHD


Advocate Children's Hospital


Early surgical intervention in infants with complex CHD results in significant disruptions to their respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems, which are all instrumental to the development of safe and efficient oral feeding skills. Standardised assessments or treatment protocols are not currently available for this unique population, requiring the clinician to rely on knowledge based on neonatal literature. Clinicians need to be skilled at evaluating and analysing these systems to develop an appropriate treatment plan to improve oral feeding skill and safety, while considering post-operative recovery in the infant with complex CHD. Supporting the family to re-establish their parental role during the hospitalisation and upon discharge is critical to reducing parental stress and oral feeding success.

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