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Active Families Research Project
Active Families Research Program

CHD and neurodevelopment

Babies who have complex heart defects often spend a lot of time in the hospital and survive complex surgeries and procedures when they are young. As a result, they often experience delays in their development as they progress through their early lives. Often it is movement skills and hand-eye coordination that are the most delayed. A lack of coordination between vision and movement can make it difficult for children to play with others, and may also lead to learning disabilities later in life.

It can be difficult to provide supervised activities to help these patients improve their movement skills and hand-eye coordination. Complex heart defects are rare so only a few patients live close to the hospital. We are evaluating home-based, parent-delivered activities to see if they improve the movement skills and hand-eye coordination of these patients, regardless of where they live.