hypoplastic artery in brain(A1) of child with complex heart defects
My daughter has hypoplastic right heart syndrome(single ventricle) and she's had several open heart surgeries. She's now 5yrs old. She has been experiencing bad headaches for a year now and they did a brain/spinal MRI/MRA everything looked good except for a hypoplastic artery in right side of brain(A1). There were no blood clots around it. She continues to have headaches so they are adjusting pain medication to control it. After all of this we saw the cardiologist and he suggested that it may have been caused by the Blalock-Taussig shunt and stenting may be needed.
How common is this hypo artery in association to the BT? Do you know if they usually stent a hypo A1 artery or leave it alone? I read that a hypoplastic A1 increases your risk of stroke. Is there anything they can do to cut those risks? Does low cardiac output cause headaches? We already know she has low cardiac output which causes dilated capillaries in her face(the headaches started about the same time as the bright red face).
Any info would be helpful as we are not scheduled to see the card or neuro for a couple of months. Thanks
Low cardiac output usually doesn't cause headaches; it usually causes lightheadedness and presyncopy, or near fainting episodes. Your daughter's case is complex so your best options are to go back and talk to her pediatric cardiologist. There is also an "ask the doctor " forum on here as well. You may want to post this question on that forum as well so that a doctor can answer your questions.
Thanks, I did post this to the expert pediatric surgery forum but after a couple of days they moved it to here. The neurologist called yesterday and said that he talked to the cardiologist so they have moved the neuro appt up to Monday, so we don't have to wait for answers after all. Thank you for your input :)
Please come back onto the forum and let us know how things are going. Also I noticed you had posted to the pediatric SURGERY forum; you would have needed to post it on the pediatric HEART forum. I'm sure you are happy you only have to wait a few more days before seeing someone; the waiting can be really hard on a family, especially on a mother. Take care!
Well, we saw the neurologist today and they will just have to keep an eye on it for the time being. Just to make sure it doesn't develop into an aneurysm, but she is already taking blood thinners so that cuts the risk of stroke a lot. They're adjusting the pain meds and will hopefully find something that will help. He did agree with the cardiologist that the shunt caused the artery to be hypoplastic. The fact that the artery is in such a crucial part of the brain means that they don't want to touch it unless they absolutely have to. That's good news, as long as we can get the headaches under control. We'll be talking with the cardiologist soon too. Thank you for your input.
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