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 THE FIT HEART 

The Way To A Healthy Heart

CONGENITAL HEART DISEASES (CHD)

They include a wide spectrum of heart diseases where there is some kind of structural defect(s) in the heart due some developmental abnormality. There is an abnormal growth (overgrowth, undergrowth, deformed growth etc.) of one or more parts of the heart and its major vessels leading to a final defective product. Patients present with either reduced blood oxygen concentration (Cyanotic CHD) or with normal blood oxygen concentration (Acyanotic CHD).

Types:

Cyanotic:

  • Fallot's tetralogy.
  • Transposition of the great arteries.
  • Tricuspid atresia: complete absence of the tricuspid valve.
  • Total anomalous pulmonary venous return: all four pulmonary veins are malpositioned.
  • Persistent truncus arteriosus.
  • Hypoplastic left heart: the left side of the heart is severely underdeveloped.
  • Pulmonary atresia: the pulmonary valve is completely closed and the only source of pulmonary blood flow is a patent ductus arteriosus.
  • Ebstein's anomaly.

Acyanotic:

  • Ventricular septal defect.
  • Atrial septal defect.
  • Patent ductus arteriosus.
  • Aortic stenosis. 
  • Pulmonic stenosis.
  • Coarctation of the aorta.
  • Atrioventricular canal defect 

The details of these defects are quite technical and will be explained to the readers if they specifically ask for.

  • Some children with congenital heart disease will require no specific treatment, but may be at risk of infective endocarditis (infection of heart).
  • Acute severe presentations may require immediate resuscitation and urgent hospital treatment.
  • If the disorder is severe enough to compromise the circulation and the oxygenation of the blood, or to put a strain on the heart or lungs, then surgical correction or non-surgical intervention, such as balloon valvotomy, may be required.
  • In the most severe cases (for example hypoplastic heart, where the heart chambers do not grow adequately), a heart transplant may be required.
  • The type and extent of the correction required will depend on the underlying abnormality. Some heart defects can be corrected just through a small hole just below the waist without any need for open heart surgery.