Ask an expert

15 Dec 2005

Alternative to Beta-Blockers
Hi Dr, My 6 year old has just beein diagnosed with Barlows syndrome. Symptoms are paplpitations 3 - 4 times a week for 15 to 20 sec per event.

Are beta-stoppers needed now? Is there a natural, vitamin, mineral supliment that could assist whilst the condition is still not that bad.

Looking forward to your responce.
Answer 409 views

01 Jan 0001

Dear Telana,

The diagnosis of Barlow’s in such a young child is very unusual. As s/he also has a rhythm irregularity, it is most important that an accurate diagnosis is made.

Please remember that heart problems in children are totally different from those in adults : from the cardiac viewpoint, children are not just “small adults”. They have a totally different range of disorders, need different investigations, are treated differently and can have very different outcomes. For all these reasons, I hope that your child has been diagnosed not just by a specialist cardiologist, but by a Paediatric Cardiologist. There are not many in private practice, but you will find one in the Paediatric department of most large state hospitals.

Whilst I am not qualified to give a definitive opinion on paediatric heart problems, I can say this much : Make sure that the diagnosis is correct, and has been made by a Paediatric cardiologist, - go to one for a real expert’s opinion. The condition may not be a Barlow’s, but could be a true leaking valve, in which case the management is totally different. But to make that diagnosis takes a very special kind of expertise, which adult cardiologists do not have.

There are no natural supplements etc which can be used here, as this is not a problem with function, but an anatomical, structural problem. Some medication can be used to control the heart rhythm in adults, but I do not know what the position is for a 6-year old : - many of these medications have side-effects which make them unsafe to use in children.

I wish you good luck in investigating this problem – I hope your child is helped soon.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
34% - 9269 votes
66% - 17914 votes