All About CHD

CHD (Congenital heart Defects) are the most common birth defect occurring in 1 out of 100 births.  They are also the most deadly.  More children lose their life to heart related defects than any other disease.  Little is understood about the causes of heart defects and they can occur with no family history of the disease.

There are a wide range of defects with the most common being a VSD (hole in the heart) to the most severe HLHS (Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome).  It is possible to live an entire lifetime with minor heart defects without being aware they were present.  However, one third of those born with heart defects will need lifesaving intervention in their first year of life.  Everyone with a heart defect should be monitored by a cardiologist for their lifetime.

Treatments have greatly improved in the last several decades to allow children with CHDs to survive into adulthood and to have full lives.  There is still much more work to do as we grow our understanding about CHD’s origins, develop better treatments, improve the quality of life and lifespan of adults living with CHDs.

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