A healthy baby is what every parent wishes for when they find out they are pregnant. However, some babies are born with health disorders known as congenital diseases in medical terms. A Congenital Heart Defect means a baby is born with a heart that does not function as a normal heart would. Although there is no specific reason for such a health condition in new-born babies, these can cause severe health problems in the future if not treated well. Some congenital heart defects can be left untreated as they might not pose any risk, but some need proper treatment as soon as they are diagnosed. Therefore, as soon as a child shows the signs of a heart problem, the child should immediately be taken to a heart specialist like Dr Manvinder Singh Sachdev, the best pediatric cardiologist in Gurgaon.
The Reasons Behind Congenital Heart Diseases in Children
There are many reasons for an unborn baby to develop a heart defect while inside its mother’s womb. The medical description of the reasons is too long and detailed to discuss. Therefore, here is a summary of the causes of developing a congenital heart defect-
- The presence of a hole in the walls of the heart chambers.
- The malformation of the heart valves where the problem lies in the opening and closing of the valves.
- Some babies are even born with multiple heart defects, which results in a dysfunctional cardiovascular system.
Only a good cardiologist in Gurgaon can detect other congenital heart defects like pulmonary atresia, tricuspid atresia, hypoplastic left heart syndrome, etc.
Reasons for Congenital Heart Defects in Children
When an adult develops a heart problem, the reasons include smoking, drinking, bad food habits, various health factors like cholesterol, and lack of exercise. However, in congenital heart defects, the reason mostly is an abnormal formation and functionality of the heart, which can develop without any reason. The best cardiologist in Gurgaon can guide you on this. However, here are some reasons that can trigger a congenital heart problem-
· Genetics- Many congenital heart defects run in the family. Genetics is one of the reasons why your baby might have a malfunctioning heart.
· Diabetes- If the mother has uncontrolled blood sugar during or before the pregnancy, the baby has a high chance of congenital heart defects.
· Medications- Certain medications increase the chances of congenital heart defects or diseases in the baby. You should discuss your medications with a doctor before you conceive.
· Rubella- If you have Rubella during your pregnancy, that may affect your baby’s heart development.
· Consumption of Alcohol or smoking during pregnancy- Drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco during your pregnancy can result in many health complications in the baby, including a congenital heart defect.
If you are searching for a good pediatric cardiologist in India, Dr Manvinder is your ideal choice.
Signs of a Congenital Heart Defect in Children
Many signs of a congenital heart defect go unnoticed as the symptoms are mild and insignificant. However, severe heart problems show prominent signs, such as-
- Unusually heavy breathing. When a child is seen breathing heavily or rapidly, you must take them for a check-up or diagnosis.
- Cyanosis or bluing of nails, tongue, or lips
- Panting during feeding resulting in weight loss
- Swelled legs, abdomen, or puffiness around the eyes
Congenital heart defects are sometimes difficult to detect unless the child grows a little older. The signs of a congenital heart defect in older children are-
- Breathlessness while working out or other heavy physical activities.
- Easily getting exhausted during physical exercises and activities.
- Losing consciousness while exercising or performing physical activities or heavy exercises.
- Hands or feet getting swelled without reason.
If your child shows any of these symptoms, you must consult an expert cardiologist in Gurgaon if you live nearby.
Treatment of Congenital Heart Defects in Children
As a child is brought to a pediatric cardiologist having shown one or more of the signs mentioned earlier, doctors conduct several tests like MRI, Echocardiogram, Electrocardiogram, Chest X-ray, etc. After that, depending on the reports, doctors decide on the ideal treatment the child needs. The treatments include-
1. Balloon Valvuloplasty – It is a treatment that is suggested in cases of aortic valve stenosis. The treatment depends on how narrow the aortic valve is.
2. Surgical Procedure – If your child develops a coarctation of the aorta, the child may undergo surgery to reinstate the blood flow through the aorta within the first few days of birth. Surgery is also recommended in conditions like Tetralogy of Fallot.
3. Medicinal Support– Some congenital heart defect like Ebstein’s anomaly or Patent ductus arteriosus needs only medicinal help to be treated. Dr Manvinder is a veteran pediatric cardiologist you can consult to discuss the treatments and procedures.
Most congenital heart defect problems are so mild that they don’t need to be treated or can be treated with medicines. However, some severe heart issues in babies and children need to be addressed and might require surgical support. An annual health checkup is important. It can be more frequent in cases of babies.