Heart and Blood Conditions

Heart Murmur Symptoms and Diagnosis

  • Schedule an appointment +

    • For appointments in Seattle, Bellevue, Everett, Federal Way, Olympia, Tri-Cities and Wenatchee, call 206-987-2515.
    • For appointments in Tacoma and Silverdale, call 253-272-1812.
    • For appointments in Alaska, call 907-339-1945.

    If this is a medical emergency, call 911.

  • Find a doctor +

  • Locations +

    • Seattle Children's Main Campus: 206-987-2515
    • Bellevue Clinic and Surgery Center: 425-454-4644
    • Everett: 425-304-6080
    • South Clinic in Federal Way: 253-838-5878
    • Olympia: 360-459-5009
    • South Sound Cardiology Clinics: 253-272-1812
    • Tri-Cities (Richland): 509-946-0976
    • Wenatchee: 509-662-9266
    • Pediatric Cardiology of Alaska: 907-339-1945
    • Seattle Children's doctors provide many cardiac services at regional sites throughout the Pacific Northwest. See our complete list of Heart Center locations.

  • Refer a patient +

    • If you are a provider, fax a New Appointment Request Form (NARF) (PDF) (DOC) to 206-985-3121 or 866-985-3121 (toll-free).
    • No pre-referral work-up is required for most conditions. If you have already done testing such as an EKG, Holter monitor or echocardiogram, please fax this information as well as relevant clinic notes and the NARF to 206-985-3121 or 866-985-3121 (toll-free).
    • Your patient will be seen as quickly as possible by the provider who is the best match for managing the current problem.
    • View our complete Heart Center Referral Information (PDF).

Symptoms of Heart Murmur

Most heart murmurs in children are the kind called innocent murmurs. They don't mean there's a problem with the heart or anything else in the body. They are harmless and usually go away on their own by the time the child becomes an adult.

By itself, a heart murmur doesn't cause symptoms, particularly if it is one of the innocent murmurs. If some condition, like a heart defect or problem with heart valves, caused the heart murmur, this condition might cause other signs or symptoms. These signs and symptoms would depend on the heart condition and how severe it is.

Heart Murmur Diagnosis

If your child's doctor hears a murmur when listening to your child's heart, they will listen for details about the sound. These details can give clues about the cause.

Your child's doctor will listen for details like when the sound happens, where in the chest it can be heard, the pitch and the tone of the heart murmur, how long it lasts and how it sounds when your child does certain movements or gets in certain positions.

The doctor will examine your child and ask about their health history and your family health history. For many children with a murmur, these steps may be all they need to determine if a murmur is innocent or from a structural heart problem.

To get more information about how your child's heart looks and works, your child may also need tests, like one or more of these: echocardiography, electrocardiogram, chest X-rays, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) of the heart, or cardiac catheterization.

Contact Us

Contact the Heart Center at 206-987-2015 for a cardiac referral, a second opinion or more information.