Single Ventricle Program

Providing Specialized Care for the Most Fragile of Patients

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Single Ventricle Program

Through the Single Ventricle Program, The Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is dedicated to helping children and families cope with the challenges of a single ventricle diagnosis and improve outcomes. The Heart Center is among only a handful of centers in North America that offer this dedicated service.

US News Badge Cardiology

Nationwide Children's Hospital is ranked by U.S. News & World Report for Cardiology and Heart Surgery.

About the Single Ventricle Program

Approximately 1,000 children are born each year with a single ventricle heart defect, in which one lower chamber of the heart is either underdeveloped, too small, or missing a valve. Specific areas of focus for the program include outcomes for hypoplastic left heart syndrome after the hybrid procedure; feeding, nutrition and factors affecting neurodevelopmental outcomes for infants with single ventricle heart defects and parent and family support after diagnosis.

Our Team

The mission of the Single Ventricle Team at Nationwide Children's is to improve mortality, morbidity and quality of life for children and families affected by single ventricle heart defects throughout their lifespan.

We have assembled a dedicated care team that consists of:

Our team works seamlessly with our Fetal Cardiac, Cardiothoracic Surgery and Interventional Catheterization teams to provide the medical care and support that our children and families need. We utilize a holistic approach to aiding the child and family, addressing not only cardiac needs but also developmental, nutritional and psychosocial challenges. Our one team approach allows us to deliver superior care that is fully integrated across the care continuum.

Meet Our Leadership

Nationwide Children's Hospital Medical Professional

Karen M. Texter

Karen M. Texter, MD, is Director of Fetal Echocardiography at The Heart Center at Nationwide Children's Hospital. Her special interests include echocardiography in congenital and acquired heart disease, and fetal cardiology.

Meet Our Team

Meet Our Patients

Knox's Story: Part 1

Knox's Story: Hybrid Stage 1

Baby Knox. One of about 40,000 children who will be born with a congenital heart defect in the United States this year. One of roughly 1,000 babies born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome in 2017. One of hundreds of tiny heart patients at Nationwide Children’s Hospital - where every kid is one of a kind. Follow Knox and his family in Part 1 of a series documenting their journey with HLHS.

Walker's Story

Read Walker's Story

Name: Walker B.

During his mother’s 20-week ultrasound Walker's mother learned her baby had hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Within a few days of his birth, Walker would need the first of three open-heart surgeries and eventually, a heart transplant.

Deacon B

Read Deacon's Story

Name: Deacon B.
Condition(s): Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome
Age Today: 16 Years

Deacon was just 10-days-old when he had his first open heart surgery. Deacon was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) which is a condition where the left side chambers of the heart develop too small to work effectively.

Makenzie R

Read Makenzie's Story

Name: Makenzie R.
Condition(s): Right Hypoplastic Heart Disease
Age Today: 11 Years

Makenzie's mom was six months pregnant when a routine ultrasound revealed that her unborn daughter had a life-threatening heart defect – right hypoplastic heart disease. This meant that only one of the chambers in Makenzie’s heart was pumping blood.

Our Resources

Nationwide Children's Hospital Patient Photo

Your Guide to Single Ventricle Heart Defects

Your baby has been prenatally diagnosed with a single ventricle heart condition and will require services at Nationwide Children’s. Our expert team of fetal medicine specialists is here to guide and support you each step of the way.

Heart Surgery Patient

Home Monitoring

The Heart Center's Home Monitoring Program arms parents with the ability to monitor weight and oxygen levels at home to help prevent illness and to provide early detection of changing cardiac status.

Family Resource Center

Family Resource Center

The Family Resource Center was designed by families and professionals to support patients and families during their time at Nationwide Children's Hospital, both inpatient and outpatient.

Little sister and big brother sitting on a couch

Sibling Support (Sibling Clubhouse)

The Children's Clubhouse is a special place for preschool and school-aged children to play and learn while their siblings are in the hospital.

Nationwide Children's Hospital Patient Stock Photo

Connecting Families

Do you feel like nobody understands what you're going through after your child's diagnosis? Nationwide Children's Hospital's Connecting Families program can match you with a peer who has gone through what you are going though. Learn more and apply here.


Since 2009, a group of clinicians, researchers, and parents from across 60 medical institutions have been collaborating to ensure that families of children, who receive a diagnosis of Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), and other univentricular hearts, have hope. Nationwide Children's was one of the first participating centers and has attended 14 semi-annual conferences. Parents have represented NCH at 100% of the conferences.

Beads of Courage

Provides innovative, arts-in-medicine supportive care programs for children coping with serious illness, their families, and the health care providers who care for them.

Single Ventricle Patient and Family Council

This working group focuses on process improvement, quality improvement, and patient and family education. A one-year commitment, our patient and family council is available to patients and families receiving both inpatient and outpatient care.

Conditions We Treat

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Normal Heart vs. Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome
Featured Video

Normal Heart Anatomy vs. Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome

Approximately 1,000 children are born each year with a single ventricle heart defect, in which one lower chamber of the heart is either underdeveloped, too small, or missing a valve. Learn how a Hypoplastic Left Heart is different from a “normal” heart and how it can be treated through a series of procedures.