The cause of heart birth defects are not entirely known, so risk factors are not certain. However, several are suspected. Genetics is thought to play a role, so families that have relatives with heart defects or other genetic syndromes may be at a higher risk. In addition, a pregnant mother with rubella or diabetes may affect the growth of her baby's heart. Lastly, certain medications have been known to cause heart birth defects, so tell your doctor what you are taking if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
Aland R. Fernandez, MD
- interventional cardiology
Location and Office HoursClearwater Cardiovascular & Interventional Consultants
Safety Harbor, FL 34695
- AvMed Health Plan
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- Universal Health Care
- Largo Medical Center
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- Mease Dunedin Hospital
- Morton Plant Hospital
- Sun Coast Hospital
- What increases my child's risk for heart birth defects?
What are the effects of an anomalous left coronary artery in children?
Johns Hopkins Medicine answeredThe pulmonary artery carries oxygen-depleted blood from the heart to the lungs. Because the anomalous left coronary artery receives its blood from the pulmonary artery rather than the aorta, it supplies the heart muscle with blood that is low in oxygen.
Secondly, as the blood pressure is three times lower in the pulmonary artery than in the aorta, blood will tend to flow backwards into the pulmonary artery from the coronary artery. This stealing of blood away from the heart muscle can have dire consequences resulting in heart attacks in children in the first year of life. This defect results in decreased heart function, poor feeding and irritability.
What is the rate of incidence for heart birth defects?
Heart birth defects are one of the most common birth defects. They currently occur in about one of every 120 births, or just under 1 percent of babies. Currently, over 750,000 American adults have a heart birth defect.
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