Pulmonary Atresia is a birth defect of the pulmonary valve making it congenital. In this condition, the valve that is supposed to control blood flow from the heart to the lungs is not formed at all.
In the babies with Pulmonary Atresia defect, blood has problem flowing towards the lungs in order to pick up oxygen for the body. In a few cases of Pulmonary Atresia, there may be a small, or missing, right ventricle that does not pump the blood to the lungs from the heart.
If you happen to travel for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia, you would have to carefully plan out your travel expenses and the itinerary. You have to decide for the treatment center and hotels to stay for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia. Be sure to take up the appointment in advance for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia, so that you do not face any trouble.
If you already know where you will be going for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia, or a consultation or a second opinion then click here to plan your travel. Otherwise, click here to get the information about facilities that specialize in Pulmonary Atresia.
If you cannot afford travel for medical treatment, please consult our directory of charitable organizations that can help arrange no-cost transportation for you.
For more information: (links to the section below)
- About Pulmonary Atresia
- Causes of Pulmonary Atresia
- Where to go for Pulmonary Atresia?
- Treatment of Pulmonary Atresia
- Risks associated with Pulmonary Atresia
- Who can go for the treatment?
About Pulmonary Atresia
Pulmonary Atresia is a heart defect at birth which is typically diagnosed as early as first few hours or days of life. In this condition, the valve that goes from the heart to the lungs to pump the blood does not form correctly. It is the defect in which the fetal heart is not formed correctly during the first 8 weeks of pregnancy.
In this condition, blood movement is difficult from the right ventricle to the lungs. Before the birth of the baby, this condition is not a serious threat to the life of a baby before birth as placenta in the womb provides for the oxygen. After birth, it becomes a life-threatening situation as lungs do not receive enough blood to make oxygen.
After birth, the pulmonary valve does not have any opening present and the blood must find another route to reach out to lungs and receive oxygen. The foramen ovale which is a natural opening in the heart chambers usually closes up after the baby is born. In the case of Pulmonary Atresia, this opening does not close and gives the way to the blood stream to reach out the lungs in order to ensure oxygen intake in the body.
Causes of Pulmonary Atresia
The problem occurs when the heart formation takes places in the first eight weeks of pregnancy. A few of the cases of congenital Pulmonary Atresia have their linkage to the genetics of the child inherited from parents and family.
Otherwise, there is no cause of Pulmonary Atresia when it occurs by chance. This condition is sometimes associated with a cardiac defect known as patent ductus arteriosus (PDA).
Where to go for Pulmonary Atresia?
In USA there are various facilities that can offer treatment for Pulmonary Atresia, if you have already determined your child’s symptoms from early stages. As there are more precautions and management rather than the treatment, quite many hospitals cater to the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia.
The following health care facilities would help you largely deal with the diagnosis and treatment of the syndrome:
- Coming Soon
After the primary treatment of surgery or a shunt operation, the child needs a life-long care under the supervision of the doctors and staff. So, the parents need to travel a lot for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia. As there is no specific treatment for completely curing Pulmonary Atresia, regular follow-up care is needed for the patient.
A regular consultation with your child’s doctor is necessary even after the surgeries. If any special treatments are to be given at home, then there is a need of special nursing staff also. But, mostly the parents have to travel a lot for the treatment of Pulmonary Atresia given the severity of this defect if it goes untreated.
If your child has cyanosis at birth, this in turn is the major indication that there is something wrong with the child’s heart. This is followed by major series of physical tests run immediately by the cardiologist and/or a neonatologist who are assisting the child.
Diagnostic tests vary with the child’s age, clinical condition and health care facility. One should make sure that their hospital has the following facilities in order to diagnose Pulmonary Atresia.
- Chest X-ray
- Echocardiogram to detect abnormal heart beat or a stressing heart muscle
- Cardiac catheterization to give out detailed structure inside the heart
Treatment of Pulmonary Atresia
The treatment in this condition is rather no permanent treatment but helps in the improvement of heart. Most of the medications are given to the child to let the ductus arteriosus to keep on pumping blood till the pulmonary valve is repaired. The child’s condition cannot be corrected but can be improved with the help of such treatments.
Your child might need a shunt (connection) in the heart to let the blood flow to the lungs. This process is done surgically with a tube from an artery connecting the arm to the pulmonary arteries. The shunt is made of Gore-Tex that’s inserted between pulmonary artery and the aorta or their branches that makes sure the proper blood flow in lungs.
In some of the cases, it is possible to burn the way through the blocked heart’s pulmonary valve. This process is known as Radiofrequency perforation of the pulmonary valve. The process involves inserting a fine tube into the heart and then burning the pulmonary valve through a hot wire being inserted. And then a balloon is inserted and used to stretch the pulmonary valve and artery. This process does not leave any scar.
A bypass surgery of the heart can be necessary at times in the case of Pulmonary Atresia. Many times, more than one surgery is required for the heart to work normally. These are open heart surgeries where the heart is stopped and opened to repair it. The machine does the work of the heart till the heart is being surgically treated.
Many patients would need regular hospital visits and would need regular follow-ups with the cardiologist to make sure the treatment is progressive. Without any treatment, the condition of Pulmonary Atresia can prove to be a fatal one.
Risks associated with Pulmonary Atresia
In many cases, the reason behind v is unknown. However, there are many factors that risk the augmentation of Pulmonary Atresia. These are listed below:
- A mother who had german measles or any other viral illness during pregnancy
- A parent who has congenital heart disease
- Alcohol consumption or smoking before or during the pregnancy
- Presence of down syndrome
Who can go for the treatment?
In a 2012 study, the researchers estimated that every one out of 10,000 babies is affected with Pulmonary Atresia. Many times, you just have to go for secondary or check-ups as the primary treatment is given at the birth of the child. Even though, if someone has developed the symptoms of Pulmonary Atresia after a few days of birth, they need to be immediately taken up for the diagnosis of defect.
The symptoms and signs of Pulmonary Atresia display right after the birth of a baby. The most obvious indication of this defect is when the child just after the birth becomes blue or in medical terms is cyanotic because of the lack of oxygen as soon as the placenta is removed.
The following are the most common symptoms related with Pulmonary Atresia. However, there is a probability that the symptoms would be experienced differently with every child.
- Rapid breathing or other breathing problems
- Difficulty in eating
- Pale or bluish skin tone
The symptoms of Pulmonary Atresia are identical to other known diseases too. So, a doctor is needed to consult for the diagnosis of Pulmonary Atresia.