A small hole in the wall (septum) that separates the right and left side of the heart usually is not any problem and doesn't require treatment.
If the hole is significant, there is what is medically termed shunting of blood from the left side to the right side chambers. If the hole is between the upper chambers (atria), oxygenated blood from the lungs will be shunted to the right atrium and recycled again to the lungs. Abnormal pressure can shunt blood from the right atrium to the left, and this would dilute oxygenated blood with blood that has not been oxygenated .
The hole can be between lower ventricles with the same effect. If there is right-to-left shunting the depleted and compromised oxygenated blood supply will cause what is termed hypoxia (low oxygen levels in heart tissue). Symptoms would include headaches, fatigue, shortness of breath.
Copyright 1994-2016 MedHelp International. All rights reserved.
MedHelp is a division of Aptus Health.
This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.