What is AVSD? In layman's terms, it is a hole in the heart. It causes blood to take the wrong path into and out of the heart. Also, the heart has to work overtime to try and push the blood out of the lungs making it difficult to breathe and eat. Fluid can build up in the lungs and around the heart, which is characteristic of congestive heart failure.
In mommy terms, it makes it a struggle every time your little angel has to eat. They burn calories at an extremely fast rate. Our cardiologist compares eating with AVSD or VSD, to running a marathon. Usually people can only run one of those a day. Our little ones have to do it repeatedly. Therefore, making it easy for them to experience failure to thrive.
In medical terms, it is a hole between the two atria and the two ventricles. This large hole cause oxygenated blood and deoxygenated blood to mix. Less oxygenated blood is able to reach the body. Therefore the heart has to pump harder to get oxygen to the body, and pressure in the lungs increases. Click here if you would like more information on AVSD.
In the general population the incidence of having AVSD is quite low. The rate is much higher in those with Down Syndrome. Hazel had VSD, which is a little bit different. Click here to read more about VSD.
You may recall that this is what little Ella has repaired recently. She continues to thrive and grow. Now...we meet another little person about to undergo this AVSD surgery, Carter.