Congenital heart disease (CHD)

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Congenital heart disease (CHD)

Congenital heart disease (CHD)

Congenital heart disease (CHD)

Some children will have some defect in the structure of their heart or vessels close to the heart since their birth – it’s called congenital heart disease.

Causes of heart disease

Unknown cause

The exact cause of most congenital heart defects is not known. There is a possibility that it can be due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

Genetic defect

There is a ceratin genetic condition that predisposes to the development of CHD. The risk of transmission of these genetic defects may vary but can be as high as 50%. If you have some known genetic condition then before pregnancy you may need counseling.

Environmental factor

Exposure to certain chemicals or drugs can cause CHD in your children.


Severe heart disease can become evident at birth or within a few months of birth. Some kids who become blue have a breathing problem and some do not feed properly and there is poor growth.

Minor defects do not cause any problem and are diagnosed on a routine check-up.

Detailed investigation for a complex CHD is usually done by a pediatric cardiologist and may involve – ECG, Echocardiography, and cardiac catheterization.


In recent years there has been a lot of advancement in techniques to treat these conditions. Many CHD may not need any treatment but will need only monitoring. There are different treatment options which may include – medicines, surgical procedures, cardiac catheterization.

These treatments are required because of heart failure, pulmonary hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias.

Dr. Rakesh Rai. MS, FRCS, MD, CCT, ASTS Fellow.