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Heart murmur in a child. Is it innocent or pathological?

MATTHEW HENRY

Figures

© Phanie/burger/diomedia.com  Model used for illlustrative purposes only
© Phanie/burger/diomedia.com Model used for illlustrative purposes only

Abstract

Heart murmurs in children are common and most are benign. A thorough investigation is required to determine if the murmur is innocent or a sign of pathological congenital heart disease. 

Key Points

  • A heart murmur is not a diagnosis.
  • Murmurs are very common and may represent a normal heart or indicate pathological congenital heart disease.
  • With a systematic approach, physicians may differentiate innocent from pathological murmurs with great sensitivity.
  • All neonates with a murmur should be referred to a cardiologist for assessment.
  • All patients with pathological murmurs, those with murmurs and syndromes associated with congenital heart disease and patients with undifferentiated murmurs should be referred to a cardiologist.

Figures

© Phanie/burger/diomedia.com  Model used for illlustrative purposes only
© Phanie/burger/diomedia.com Model used for illlustrative purposes only