Health corner - International - Education - Health
Heart murmurs for children are no need to panic
“My child can’t run, he has a heart murmur.” This is a statement that simply reflects the anxiety of parents faced with a situation that they don’t understand, but one which is really quite common. Usually, this heart noise is not a sign of any sort of malformation at all. Most importantly, it need not affect any aspect of a child’s life.

“My child can’t run, he has a heart murmur.” This is a statement that simply reflects the anxiety of parents faced with a situation that they don’t understand, but one which is really quite common. Usually, this heart noise is not a sign of any sort of malformation at all. Most importantly, it need not affect any aspect of a child’s life.

A heart murmur in children may be detected on a number of occasions: during their first examination at the maternity clinic; during standard pediatric examinations; or even when having a checkup for a sports fitness certificate. A pediatrician will pick up a murmur when listening to a child’s heart, but this noise doesn’t necessarily mean that there is any cardiac malformation. It does not necessarily indicate any physical anomaly and can even occur in cases of fever or nervousness.

If the noise is detected at the maternity clinic, an ECG is carried out. This is a simple and conclusive examination which, in most cases, means that parents can go home safe in the knowledge that the noise is without any anatomical cause.

If the murmur is first detected at the age of four, for example, there is no point in getting worried too hastily. The child’s heart will need to be listened to again some time later by a specialist in pediatric cardiology. Again, in most cases it will be possible to reassure the parents and record the child’s heart as completely normal.

However, it can sometimes happen that a heart murmur is indeed anatomical in origin. Still, there are hundreds of different heart malformations. Some are so harmless that they don’t even require monitoring and will not compromise the child’s physical capacity in any way. Others can be more serious, but the majority can be treated successfully with surgery or other less invasive methods.


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