Congenital Heart Defects (CHD)

Some important definitions before you learn about CHD:

Congenital: Present at birth

Congenital Heart Defects: Heart conditions that a baby is born with. These conditions can affect the heart's shape, how it works, or both.

General CHD Facts

•  Congenital Heart Defects are the most common birth defect
•  Each year, about 1 out of every 100 babies born has a heart defect
•  Over half of the affected babies born are at significant risk of dying without surgery to correct
   the defect
•  There are about 35 types of known congenital heart defects. A number of these occur in    combination
•  Little is known about the cause of most congenital heart defects. There is no known prevention    or cure for any of them
•  More than half of all babies born with CHD will require surgery in order to survive
•  21% of children requiring cardiac surgery are under 1 month old
•  40% of children requiring cardiac surgery are under 1 year old
•  Each year over 1 million babies are born world wide with a congenital heart defect. 100,000 of
   them will not live to see their first birthday and thousands more die before they reach
•  Across Canada, there are an estimated 100,000 adults with CHD. At least half face the prospect
   of complications, multiple surgeries and/or premature or sudden death
•  There are very few resources allocated for the care of adult CHD patients In Ontario there are
   only 33 cardiologists formally trained in the care of adult CHD patients, and only four surgeons
   with adult CHD expertise


•  CHDs can be discovered during pregnancy, after birth, or in adulthood
•  Early detection is of critical importance and can increase survival rates
•  During a pregnant woman's 20 week anatomy scan, doctors are sometimes able to detect a
   CHD. If you are pregnant, ask your doctor these important questions:
•  Is the heart rate normal?
•  Do you look at the arteries?
•  Are the heart and stomach in the correct position?
•  Is the heart function normal?
•  Do you see 4 chambers?
•  Tests used to diagnose CHD after a baby has been born Include:
•  Pulse Oximetry Screening in newborns
•  Cardiac Catheterization
•  Chest X-Ray
•  Echocardiogram
•  Electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG)
•  Magnetic Resonance Imaging (Cardiac CT)


Some symptoms of CHD include:

•  A heart murmur
•  Fast breathing
•  Shortness of breath
•  Poor feeding, especially in infants
•  Poor weight gain in infants
•  Fatigue during exercise or activity

SickKids Labatt Family Heart Centre Facts

•  The Labatt Family Heart Centre at SickKids is one of the world's leading centres dedicated to
   the study and treatment of congenital heart disease
•  In 2013 alone, the centre undertook
•  9,412 Clinical Visits
•  12,177 Diagnostic Echocardiograms
•  636 Pediatric Heart Operations
•  12 Heart Transplants
•  SickKids performs more than 85% of pediatric cardiovascular surgery
•  Each year at SickKids, about 50 children are recipients of solid organ transplants, heart
    transplants account for 25% of these
•  The Labatt Family Heart Centre is one of the largest pediatric heart transplant centres in
    the world
•  Successful transplantation outcomes for most patients with a five year survival rate greater
    than 70%
•  In 2004, SickKids became one of the first institutions in North America to use the Berlin Heart
•  The ABO-Incompatible Heart Transplant was pioneered at SickKids; since then 20 have taken
   place at SickKids
•  In 1009, Doctors at SickKids were among the first in Canada to perform cardiac surgery on a
   baby in utero

For more information please visit the Cardiac Kids Blog

AEDs, A Life-Saving Investment

Cardiac Kids families receive a
20% discount on our AEDS

For Details, Click Here,,,

Important Links:

•  To learn about each unique CHD please visit About Kids Health
•  For information about CHD in adults please visit the Canadian Congenital Heart Alliance
•  If your child has been diagnosed with a CHD please consult Heart and Soul: Your guide to living
   with Congenital Heart Disease published by the Heart and Stroke Foundation.
•  To find out about Pulse Oximetry Screening in newborns please visit: Baby Heart Screening



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Congenital Heart Defects

Congenital Heart Defects are the most common birth defect. Each year, about 1 out of every 100 babies born has a heart defect.

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