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Congenital Cardiac Physiologists/Scientists/Technicians/Echocardiographers
Congenital Cardiac Physiologists
Congenital Cardiac Physiologists (CCPs) have an important role in the diagnosis and management of congenital heart disease (CHD). The fields covered include:
A: Non-invasive techniques:
i. Fetal echocardiography
ii. Transthoracic echocardiography in children and / or adults
iii. Transoesophageal echocardiography
iv. 3D echocardiography
v. Advanced functional analysis
b. Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring
ii. 24 hour / long term event recorder analysis
iii. Pacemaker assessment
d. Exercise testing
i. Treadmill testing
ii. Cardiopulmonary exercise testing
e. Tilt testing
B. Invasive techniques:
a. Cardiac catheterisation monitoring e.g. haemodynamics
b. Procedural imaging
i. TOE procedure guidance
i. Radiofrequency ablation monitoring
ii. Pacemaker insertion
iii. Electrophysiology studies
d. XMR haemodynamic monitoring
CCPs are central departmental resource, maintaining high levels of competence and acting as role models in the development and delivery of education to both physiologists and trainee doctors, with the goal of specialist accreditations (such as the European Society of Cardiology Accreditation in Transthoracic Congenital Heart Disease Echocardiography).
These roles will vary between centres and not all congenital centres will offer every role.
Education and Training
Recently training in this subspecialty has recently undergone much change under NHS England to become part of the Modernising Scientific Careers programme (MSC) under the new Academy of Healthcare Science. Interested students should consult the NHS Careers website or The National School for Health Care Sciences for further information. At the present, there is no direct pathway to Congenital Heart Physiology other than at Higher Specialist Scientific Trainee (HSST) level (visit page on Modernising Scientific Careers).
Students interested in CHD are advised to apply for the STP adult-focused Cardiac Physiology.
Key documents/website links:
[Content provided by Karolina Bilska, Senior Cardiac Physiologist, Evelina Children's Hospital, London and Anne Banning, Paediatric Echocardiographer, University Hospital Southampton - last updated 8 November 2016]
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