What is Congenital Heart Disease?
Congenital heart disease is a heart irregularity present at birth. The disease can affect:-
- Heart walls
- Heart valves
- Blood vessels
There are several types of congenital heart defects. They can reach from simple situations that do not create signs to complex issues that cause severe, life-threatening signs.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are presently 1 million adults and 1 million children in the United States living with congenital heart problems. Possible treatment and follow-up care for problems have increased drastically over the past few decades. So, almost all children with heart problems survive into adulthood. However, some require continuous treatment for their heart problem throughout their lives. However, several go on to have active and productive lives despite their situation.
Types of congenital heart disease
Though there are several types of congenital heart disease, they can be divided into three main classes:-
- In heart valve problems, the valves inside the heart that straight blood flow may close up or leak. However, this obstructs the heart ability’s to pump blood correctly.
- In heart wall problems, the natural wall that survives between the left and right sides and the upper and lower chambers of the heart may not build correctly, causing blood to back up into the heart or to develop in places. The problem puts force on the heart to work harder, which may result in high blood pressure.
- In blood vessel problems, the arteries and veins that convey blood to the heart and back out to the body may not task correctly. However, this can decrease or block blood flow, leading to severe health complications.
What are the symptoms of congenital heart disease?
This disease is often disclosed during a pregnancy ultrasound. If your consultant hears an abnormal heartbeat, for example, they may further look over the issue by performing certain exams. However, these may involve an echocardiogram, a chest X-ray, or an MRI scan. However, if a diagnosis is made, your consultant will make sure the appropriate specialists are accessible during delivery.
In some cases, the signs of a congenital heart problem may not seem until shortly after birth. However, a newborn with heart problems may experience:-
- Bluish lips, skin, fingers, and toes
- Breathlessness or trouble breathing
- Feeding troubles
- Low birth weight
- Chest pain
- Delayed growth
In some other cases, the signs of a congenital heart defect may not seem until several years after growth. Once signs do build, they may include:-
- Abnormal heart rhythms
- Difficult in breathing
What causes congenital heart disease?
This disease may occur as a result of an early increasing problem in the heart’s structure. The problem typically interferes with the normal flow of blood through the heart, which may impact breathing. Although researchers are not quite sure why the heart fails to build correctly, suspected causes include the following:-
- The heart problem may run in families.
- Proceeding with certain prescription medication during pregnancy puts a child at a greater risk for a heart defect.
- Utilizing alcohol to illegal drugs during pregnancy can raise a child’s risk of having a heart defect.
- Mothers who had a virl issue during the first trimester of pregnancy are severe likely to give birth to a child with a heart problem.
- Raised blood sugar levels, like occurs with diabetes, may affect childhood development.
How is congenital heart disease cured?
The treatment for a congenital heart problem depends on the type and severity of the problem. Some babies have mild heart issues that heal on their own with time. Others may have many issues that need extensive treatment. In these cases, possible treatment may include the following:-
However, there are many more medications that can support heart work more efficiently. Some can also be useful to prevent blood clots from forming or to manage an irregular heartbeat.
Implantable heart devices
However, some of these complications associated with congenital heart disease can be prevented, with the use of certain devices, including pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs). A pacemaker can support regulate an abnormal heart rate, and an ICD may right life-threatening irregular heartbeats.
However, this technique allows consultants to repair certain congenital heart issues without surgically opening the chest and heart. During this technique, the consultant will insert a thin tube into a vein in the leg and guide it up to the heart.
Open heart surgery
This type of surgery may be required if catheter procedures aren’t enough to manage congenital heart disease. A surgeon may execute open heart surgery to close holes in the heart, manage heart valves, or widen blood vessels.
However, if congenital heart disease is too difficult to fix, a heart transplant may be required. During this period, the child’s heart is restored with a healthy heart from a donor.
Last Updated on July 28, 2023 by john liam