Congenital Heart Disease can be described as a number of different problems affecting the heart. According to professors at many universities, it is the most common type of birth defect. It is said that Congenital Heart Disease is responsible for more deaths in the first year of life than any other birth defect. Some of the defects may heal over time, but others will require treatment. Congenital Heart Disease is sometimes divided into two types: Cyanotic (blue discoloration caused by a lack of oxygen) and non-cyanotic. Granted, there are many symptoms of the Congenital Heart Disease.
Symptoms Of course, like many diseases do, the Congenital Heart Disease has numerous symptoms. But, the symptoms depend on the specific condition of the disease. An example would be that of one of the types (Cyanotic and non-cyanotic), Pulmonary Valve Stenosis. Some of the symptoms (NY Times, 2009) include bluish coloration to the skin, chest pain, fainting, fatigue, poor weight gain or failure to thrive, shortness of breath and sudden death. PVS is usually caused by a problem that happens when the fetus is forming. Though the cause is unknown, genetics could play a role.
Moreover, there are plenty other symptoms of the Congenital Heart Disease. Aortic Stenosis According to (PubMed Health, 2010) in Aortic Stenosis, the aortic valve does not open fully, thus decreasing blood flow from the heart. At times, Aortic Stenosis may be present at birth, or it may develop later in life. Symptoms of Aortic Stenosis may include breathlessness, chest pain (crushing, squeezing, etc), weakness, sensation of feeling the heart beat (palpitations: unpleasant sensations of irregular and/or forceful beating of the heart. ) Atrial Septal Defect
The Atrial Septal Defect (ASD), (KidsHealth 2009) sometimes referred to as a hole in the heart, is a type of congenital heart defect in which there is an abnormal opening in the dividing wall between the upper filling chambers of the heart. Symptoms of this defect include poor appetite, poor growth, shortness of breath and lung problems and infections. In some situations, developing an ASD might be genetic. But, more than likely, it occurs during fetal development of the heart and is present at birth. Obviously, with all of the symptoms, there has to be exams and diagnostic tests done to recognize the signs and take care of the problem.
Signs and Tests Congenital Heart Disease, (WebMD 2010) may be diagnosed, in adults, before birth, right after birth, during childhood, or not until adulthood. There is a possibility that one could have a defect and no symptoms. In most cases, it is detected when your doctor hears an abnormal heart sound or murmur while listening to your heart beat. Diagnostic tests are ran to locate the different types of murmur’s one may have. Some of the types of tests doctors proceed with are the Echocardiogram or transesophageal echocardiogram, cardiac catheterization, chest X-ray, electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) and/or MRI.
No doubt the doctors do all they can to prevent one from suffering from this terrible disease. Preventions Preventing Congenital Heart Disease is not a very hard task, but one mishap or mistake could ruin everything. For example, avoid alcohol and other drugs during pregnancy. Any intake of certain medicine during your 9-month span could have serious or even deathly effects on your unborn infant. A mother should inform her doctor that she is expecting a child before receiving any medications. Another important task one has to keep up with is their blood sugar level.
Poorly observed blood sugar levels in women who have been diagnosed with diabetes, will experience a high rate of congenital heart defects during pregnancy. Recent family members may have been diagnosed with congenital heart disease so one will need to make sure to talk to their health care provider about a screening. Conclusion Congenital Heart Disease is described as different types of problems affecting the heart. It has many symptoms, just as many other diseases do, and can be prevented with close observation and frequent trips to one’s doctor.