Meeting the challenge: The evolving global landscape of adult congenital heart disease

Aleksander Kempny, Rodrigo Fernández-Jiménez, Oktay Tutarel, Konstantinos Dimopoulos, Anselm Uebing, Yumi Shiina, Rafael Alonso-Gonzalez, Wei Li, Lorna Swan, Helmut Baumgartner, Michael A. Gatzoulis, Gerhard Paul Diller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Background Only limited information is available on the worldwide distribution and volume of adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) centers. We aimed to assess the centers using a bibliometric approach. Methods and results We identified publications presenting original research in the field of ACHD between 1995 and 2011. A total of 94,119 articles were identified which underwent electronic filtering and manual review. Overall, a dramatic increase in ACHD publications was seen over the study period. This was accompanied by a matching increase in impact factors and an over-proportional rise in ACHD contributions relative to the general academic field. Research output correlated well with self-reported patient volume and the number of identified ACHD centers in Europe and North America was in agreement with published surveys, thus validating our methodology. We observed a steady increase in the number of publishing ACHD centers worldwide. The number of ACHD centers per 10-million population was highest for Europe (3.6), followed by North America (1.7), Oceania (1.5), South America (0.4), Asia (0.3) and Africa (0.1). In addition, we evaluated the relative research output between developed and emerging economies and provide an overview over the main areas of research in the ACHD field. Conclusions Global interest in ACHD is increasing and this is reflected, both, in the number of publishing centers and the volume of research. Our data provides insights into the geographical and temporal distribution of ACHD research over the last 1 1/2 decades. These results could serve as benchmarks for international comparisons and guide efforts for improving ACHD infrastructure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5182-5189
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 15 Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Adult congenital heart disease
  • Health policy
  • Outcome


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