Pulmonary stenosis: Defect-specific diagnostic accuracy of heart murmurs in children

David A. Danford, Khaled J. Salaymeh, Ameeta B. Martin, Scott E. Fletcher, Carl H. Gumbiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine the accuracy of expert examination for pulmonary stenosis (PS) among children with murmur. Study design: Five hundred twenty- one consecutive, previously unevaluated, pediatric patients were enrolled. The investigators prospectively recorded their diagnosis and level of confidence, categorizing any PS suspected as mild or severe. After echocardiography, PS was categorized by severity with peak systolic flow velocity. Receiver operating characteristic curves described accuracy of clinical examination. Results: Sixty-two patients had PS (mild, 29; moderate, 27; and severe, 6). Receiver operator characteristic curve areas were: total, 0.834 ± 0.033; mild, 0.862 ± 0.044; and moderate to severe, 0.809 ± 0.046 (P = .20). Specific difficulties in discrimination of PS from small ventricular septal defect, aortic valve disease, atrial septal defect, and innocent murmur were identified. All cases of severe PS in which PS was suspected were thought possibly severe. Conclusions: Although expert clinical examination is highly accurate for distinguishing PS from non-PS cardiac murmurs in pediatric patients, it is imperfect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)76-81
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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