In most cases, the exact cause of a congenital heart defect, such as tricuspid atresia, is unknown. However, several factors may increase the risk of a baby being born with a congenital heart defect, including:

  • A mother who had German measles (rubella) or another viral illness during early pregnancy
  • A parent who has a congenital heart defect
  • Drinking alcohol during pregnancy
  • Smoking before or during pregnancy
  • A mother who has poorly controlled diabetes
  • A mother who has lupus, an autoimmune disorder
  • Use of some types of medications during pregnancy, such as the acne drug isotretinoin (Claravis, Amnesteem, others), some anti-seizure medications and some bipolar disorder medications
  • The presence of Down syndrome, a genetic condition that results from an extra 21st chromosome
Aug. 15, 2015