Ventricular Septal Defects
National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.
It is possible that the main title of the report Ventricular Septal Defects is not the name you expected.
Ventricular septal defects are heart defects that are present at birth (congenital). The normal heart has four chambers. The two upper chambers, known as atria, are separated from each other by a fibrous partition known as the atrial septum. The two lower chambers are known as ventricles and are separated from each other by the ventricular septum. Valves connect the atria (left and right) to their respective ventricles. The aorta, the main vessel of arterial circulation, carries blood from the left ventricle and away from the heart.
Ventricular septal defects can occur in any portion of the ventricular septum. The size and location of the defect determine the severity of the symptoms. Small ventricular septal defects can close on their own; (spontaneously) or become less significant as the child matures and grows. Moderately-sized defects can cause congestive heart failure, which is characterized by an abnormally rapid rate of breathing (tachypnea), wheezing, unusually fast heartbeat (tachycardia), enlarged liver (hepatomegaly), and/or failure to thrive. Large ventricular septal defects can cause life-threatening complications during infancy. Persistent elevation of the pressure within the artery that carries blood away from the heart and to the lungs (pulmonary artery) can cause permanent damage to the lungs. The exact cause of ventricular septal defects is not fully understood.
Adult Congenital Heart Association
- 3300 Henry Avenue, Suite 112
- Philadelphia, PA 19129
- Tel: (215)849-1260
- Fax: (215)849-1261
- Tel: (888)921-2242
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: http://www.achaheart.org/
American Heart Association
- 7272 Greenville Avenue
- Dallas, TX 75231
- Tel: (214)784-7212
- Fax: (214)784-1307
- Tel: (800)242-8721
- Email: Review.firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.heart.org
Congenital Heart Information Network (C.H.I.N.)
- P.O. Box 3397
- Margate City, NJ 08402-0397
- Tel: (609)823-4507
- Fax: (609)822-1574
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: http://www.tchin.org
Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
- PO Box 8126
- Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
- Tel: (301)251-4925
- Fax: (301)251-4911
- Tel: (888)205-2311
- Website: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/
Kids With Heart ~ National Association for Children's Heart Disorders, Inc.
- 1578 Careful Dr.
- Green Bay, WI 54304
- Tel: (920)498-0058
- Fax: (920)498-0058
- Tel: (800)538-5390
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.kidswithheart.org
Little Hearts, Inc.
- P.O. Box 171
- 110 Court Street, Suite 3A
- Cromwell, CT 6416
- Tel: (860)635-0006
- Fax: (860)635-0006
- Tel: (866)435-4673
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: http://www.littlehearts.org
NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
- P.O. Box 30105
- Bethesda, MD 20892-0105
- Tel: (301)592-8573
- Fax: (301)251-1223
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/
For a Complete Report
This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). For a full-text version of this report, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".
The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only.
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This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.
Last Updated: 1/30/2008
Copyright 2005 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.
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