Monday, May 10, 2010

Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD)

VSD is the most common congenital anomaly of the heart and it accounts for 15-25% of congenital heart disease. This is described as a "hole in the heart". The heart is made of 4 chambers the right and left atrium on top of the right and left ventricles. Unoxygenated blood comes from all the body and is channeled into the right atrium this then goes to the right ventricle and this gets oxygenated through the lungs then passes the left atrium to the left ventricle and this becomes oxygenated blood that gets distributed through the aorta to the rest of the body. The VSD is basically a hole in between the chambers of the ventricles that result in mixing of the oxygenated and unoxygenated blood.

Usually for the first few weeks of life a heart murmur can be heard by your doctor and most of the babies will be asymptomatic especially when the VSD is small. In some cases when the VSD is moderate or large the babies will not be gaining enough weight. They will be breathing faster than usual and sometimes their color looks dusky from time to time.

Small VSD usually close over time. This will be followed-up by the baby's cardiologist Moderate to large VSDs might need surgical intervention but they do not do the surgery till the baby is about 6 months of age. They want the baby to be gaining enough weight by giving them a high caloric diet at 24 to 26 kcal per ounce and putting some feeding tube to help them gain weight.They also start them on some diuretics or heart medicine to help maintain them and try to control their symptoms.

The great thing about this ventricular septal defects is that most of them resolve on its own and it is easily correctable by surgery.


rhinoplasty beverly hills said...

having cardiological problems from this age is a dangerous affair...all their life would be of restriction and health consciousness.

ventricular septal defect said...

Informative blog. Thanks for sharing your experience. If the septal defects are small say less than 0.5 square cm, there is less reason to worry. If the VSD is large generally greater than 1 sqaure cm, then there is a reason to worry. This is because there is a significant shunting of blood from the left ventricle into the right ventricle. The symptoms in such a child are labored breathing, difficulty feeding, poor growth. Parents should watch out for these. Source: India septal defect