Ground-breaking paediatric cardiac surgery demonstrated on UK Pavilion at Arab Health 2020


Complex heart surgery which hopes to give the best possible chance of survival to children diagnosed with heart problems, including congenital heart disease, will be demonstrated on the ABHI UK Pavilion at Arab Health 2020.

The technically challenging paediatric cardiac surgery, which will be performed on the UK’s state-of-the-art simulation operating theatre, will be led by surgeons from the internationally acclaimed Evelina London Children's Hospital, which has the largest and longest established fetal cardiac service in the UK.

Dr Owen Miller, a consultant in paediatric and fetal cardiology, will be joined by consultant paediatric surgeon Mr Caner Salih to demonstrate the unique procedure, which hopes to repair the heart defects a child is born with (congenital heart disease) and those developed after birth that may require surgery.

This includes the challenging Norwood procedure, a type of open-heart surgery that is usually performed when a baby is around 1–2 weeks old, and which forms stage one of a three-stage heart surgery in patients with hypoplastic left heart syndrome – one of the most complex cardiac defects in newborn babies. The hospital was one of the first centres in the UK to offer this procedure.

Today Evelina London Children’s Hospital – which forms part of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust – continues its long history of innovation in employing ground-breaking technologies and new techniques to diagnose heart defects in children and adults.

The specialist children’s hospital offers pioneering three-dimensional visualisation of the fetal heart using prenatal MRI scans – which has been shown to significantly improve visualisation and diagnostic quality in congenital heart disease before birth – a technique that is not offered anywhere else in the world.

Dr Owen Miller, Consultant in Paediatric & Fetal Cardiology, commented: “We are proud to demonstrate such pioneering cardiac imaging and surgery at Arab Health.

“Our unit diagnoses around 200 major heart abnormalities in babies before birth each year. As well as detecting problems with the way the heart has formed, we can detect abnormal heart rhythms and problems with the heart function, working together to give them the best possible chance of survival.

The fetal cardiology team at Evelina London has a vast experience of diagnosis and management of cardiac abnormalities. The unit at the hospital has produced many ‘world-firsts’ including interventional catheter techniques, advanced cardiac imaging and fetal cardiac intervention.

With an international reputation in all aspects of diagnosis and treatment of patients with heart problems from the fetus through transition to the adult services, the hospital offers pioneering treatments to patients across the United Kingdom and internationally. More than 2,000 high risk pregnancies are evaluated in the hospital’s fetal cardiology unit each year.

Congenital heart disease is one of the most common types of birth defect, affecting up to 8 in every 1,000 babies born in the UK. Though it can be picked up in ultrasound scans during pregnancy, sometimes it is not found until after the baby has been born; depending on its severity, it may require cardiac surgery.

 Paul Benton, Managing Director, International at the ABHI added: “We are delighted to be joined by Evelina London Children’s Hospital at Arab Health. Our simulated surgical stage is designed to celebrate collaborations between healthcare providers, clinicians and healthcare technology companies and, most importantly, allow visitors to watch Britain’s best surgeons in action. The specialist team at Evelina London are a fine example of this, with a history in innovation and a world-renowned unit that offers pioneering techniques to diagnose congenital heart defects in newborn babies and children.”

 Arab Health takes place 27– 30 January 2020 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai, UAE. Throughout the show, ABHI and the UK Pavilion will be located in Hall 2 stand G30.

 The interactive demonstration will take place on 28 January 2020 on the ABHI stand. There will also be an opportunity to have discussions with the clinicians about various aspects of complex cardiac conditions from diagnosis to management.