Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is a congenital heart condition that affects blood flow in your child’s heart. Because the blood flow isn’t efficient, your child’s heart and lungs have to work harder. At Children’s National Heart Institute, we use advanced catheterization procedures to close these holes.
PDA Closure at Children’s National
In the womb, developing babies have a blood vessel called the ductus arteriosus that normally closes soon after birth. PDA occurs when this artery does not close properly. It is a common congenital defect and often affects premature babies.
When the ductus arteriosus does not close, oxygen-rich blood from your infant’s aorta mixes with oxygen-poor blood from the pulmonary artery, causing strain on the heart and lungs. If untreated, PDA can lead to difficulty breathing, chronic respiratory infections and heart failure.
At Children’s National, our expert cardiac catheterization team uses minimally invasive procedures to repair the hole. Using a catheter-based procedure, we are able to avoid surgery. This leads to a shorter recovery, less pain and a quicker return to normal activities. In addition, there is no chest scar.
AMPLATZER® Duct Occluder Device for PDA: What to Expect
The AMPLATZER device is the most advanced device of its type available in the United States. Our team has extensive experience using the AMPLATZER Duct Occluder to repair PDA in children.
On the day of the procedure, our expert pediatric cardiac anesthesiologist will place your child under sedation. He or she will be asleep during the procedure and not feel any pain. The anesthesiologist continues to monitor your child the entire time. Learn more about anesthesia at Children’s National.
During the procedure, we will:
- Insert a catheter (a long, thin tube) into a blood vessel near your child’s groin.
- Measure pressure and oxygen in heart and size of opening.
- Place the device onto a special catheter and advance it to the open ductus arteriosus.
- Push the device out of catheter and implant it over the opening. The device fills the opening and seals it closed.
- Remove the catheter and close the incision.
- Transfer your child to our comfortable, child-friendly Cardiac Procedure Recovery Unit (CPRU), where our experienced pediatric nursing team will provide expert recovery care.
- Discuss discharge, recovery and follow-up instructions with you.
For more information, call us at 1-202-476-2020.