Complications of atrioventricular canal defect can include:
- Enlargement of the heart. Increased blood flow through the heart forces it to work harder than normal, causing it to enlarge.
- Pulmonary hypertension. When the heart's left ventricle weakens and can't pump out enough blood, pressure builds and backs up through blood vessels in the lungs, causing high blood pressure in the lungs.
- Respiratory tract infections. Atrioventricular canal defect can cause recurrent bouts of lung infections.
- Heart failure. Untreated, atrioventricular canal defect usually results in the heart's inability to pump enough blood to meet the body's needs.
Complications later in life
Treatment greatly improves the outlook for children with atrioventricular canal defect. However, some children who have corrective surgery may still be at risk later in life of:
- Leaky heart valves
- Narrowing of the heart valves
- Abnormal heart rhythm
- Breathing difficulties associated with lung damage
Common signs and symptoms of these complications include:
- Shortness of breath
- Rapid, fluttering heartbeat
Additional surgery might be needed to correct complications of atrioventricular canal defect.
Aug. 14, 2015
- Fleishman CE, et al. Clinical manifestations, pathophysiology, and diagnosis of atrioventricular (AV) canal defects. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed June 3, 2015.
- Bonow RO, et al. Congenital heart disease. In: Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 201t. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed June 3, 2015.
- Fleishman CE, et al. Management and outcome of atrioventricular (AV) canal defects. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed June 3, 2015.
- What are holes in the heart? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/holes. Accessed June 4, 2015.
- Martin RJ, et al. Genetic and environmental contributions to congenital heart disease. In: Fanaroff and Martin's Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.; Saunders Elsevier; 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. What other conditions are associated with ventricular septal defect (VSD)? Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Backer CL. Modified single patch: Are we still worried about subaortic stenosis? Annals of Thoracic Surgery. 2015;99:1671.
- Creasy RK, et al. Fetal cardiac malformations and arrhythmias. In: Creasy and Resnik's Maternal-Fetal Medicine: Principles and Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014.
- The impact of congenital heart defects. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/CongenitalHeartDefects/TheImpactofCongenitalHeartDefects/The-Impact-of-Congenital-Heart-Defects_UCM_001218_Article.jsp. American Heart Association. Accessed June 7, 2015.