what is chd?

Most people have never heard of Congenital Heart Defect (CHD), but the scary truth is that
CHD is the #1 cause of birth defect related deaths, and the leading cause of
ALL infant deaths in the United States.

Before Hayden was prenatally diagnosed with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), a severe form of CHD, no one in our extended family or network of friends knew much about CHD or HLHS. Unfortunately, these acronyms soon became and still remain a daily topic in our house and among the people in our lives. Because of Hayden, over 20,000 are now aware of Congenital Heart Defects and Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome.

Below are some disturbing facts about CHD and HLHS as well as helpful links for more information.

Congenital Heart Defect (CHD)

  • Congenital heart defects are America’s and every country’s #1 birth defect. Nearly one of every 100 babies is born with a CHD.

  • Congenital heart defects are the #1 cause of birth defect related deaths.

  • Congenital heart defects are the leading cause of all infant deaths in the United States.

  • Each year approximately 40,000 babies are born in the United States with a congenital heart defect. Thousands of them will not reach their first birthday and thousands more will die before they reach adulthood.

  • Each year over 1,000,000 babies are born worldwide with a congenital heart defect. 100,000 of them will not live to see their first birthday and thousands more will die before they reach adulthood.

Please visit these links for more information:

http://www.childrensheartfoundation.org/about-chf/fact-sheets

http://mendedlittleheartsofcoloradosprings.org/congenital-heart-defect-chd-fact-sheet/

http://www.chop.edu/service/cardiac-center/chd-awareness/

Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS)

  • Hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) is a severe congenital heart defect in which the left side of the heart is underdeveloped. The heart's left side has the job of pumping oxygenated blood into the aorta, the large artery that carries blood to the body.

  • Hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) is fatal without early intervention. It will typically require open-heart surgery to re-direct the oxygen-rich ("red") blood and oxygen-poor ("blue") blood in a series of three reconstructive operations known as "Staged Reconstruction."

    The three stages are respectfully named:

    • The Norwood - which takes place within the first week of life
    • The Glenn - typically between 4 - 6 months old
    • The Fontan - anywhere between 2 - 4 years old.

    This 3 stage surgical process is not a 100% fix - often times children and young adults need a pacemaker or even a heart transplant.

  • The oldest known living survivor with HLHS is in their early 30's.

Please visit these links for more information:

http://www.chop.edu/service/cardiac-center/heart-conditions/hypoplastic-left-heart-syndrome-hlhs.html

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hypoplastic-left-heart-syndrome/DS00744

http://www.childrenshospital.org/az/Site502/mainpageS502P1.html