Our notes are now found under OSCE Learning! Click here

Paediatric cardiac examination

Do a full adult cardiac examination with the following additional components.


  • Dysmorphic features (Down’s, Williams and DiGeorge syndromes associated with congenital heart disease; Turner syndrome associated with AS; Noonan syndrome associated with PS)
  • Work of breathing
  • Colour (pallor, cyanosis, mottling) 
  • Alertness and interest in surroundings
  • Nutritional status

Normal paediatric observations

 <1 year1-2 years2-5 years5-12 years>12 years
Resp rate30-4025-3525-3020-2515-20
Heart rate110-160100-15095-14080-12060-100


  • Also listen in the left interscapular area (systolic murmur = coarctation of the aorta), and in the left infraclavicular area (systolic murmur = coarctation of the aorta; continuous machinery-like murmur = patent ductus arteriosus)

To complete

  • Observations including blood pressure
  • Preductal (right hand) and postductal (left hand or either foot) oxygen saturations to assess for critical congenital heart disease (both should be ≥95%)
  • Growth charts