Pediatric Heart Expert Forum
is 3.4mm VSD need surgery ?
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Questions in this forum are answered by pediatric cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons and anesthesiologists from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. This forum is for questions and support about pediatric heart problems, symptoms and topics such as heart murmurs, palpitations, fainting, chest pain, congenital heart defects (including management and intervention), fetal cardiology, adult congenital cardiology, arrhythmias and pre-participation athletic screening.

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is 3.4mm VSD need surgery ?

Please find a query along with this email.
My Son is 11 years old and was born with congenital heart sub-arterial VSD, left to right shunt.
The concerned doctor that time advised that this would heal on its own and no specific medical care is required for this.

Recently, during check up it was found that the hole is not healed and current diameter is 3.4mm.
According to the doctor,there is remote chance of further healing to this hole. Doctor suggested to go for surgery in order to close this hole. Moreover, he suggested that this requires open heart surgery due to the criticality in the location of the hole.
My son is perfectly healthy and active. Also, he doesnot have any symptoms or any other health problem.

We are very much worried and would like to ask you following queries..
i. Does he really need a surgery? if Yes, does it really have to be a open surgery instead of any other minimal invasive methods?
ii. In case surgery is required, what would be the post operative recovery time required to come back to absolute normal life?
iii. Are there any post operative complication to be aware of?
iv. What would be the approximate expenses to be incurred for this procedure.

I request for your valuable advice on this matter at your earliest convenience.

Waiting eagerly for your reply/advice/suggestions/support.

Best Regards,
773637_tn?1327450515
Dear Rico,

Without evaluating your son, I cannot truly say if he requires surgery, or not.  I can say that a 3.4 mm VSD is likely small and that he is probably not having any specific risk to his lungs from any severe increase in blood flow recirculating through the defect back to the lungs.  However, the defect is below the aortic valve, and  rarely we can see the valve leaflet get pulled down, distort the valve, and lead to aortic valve leakage. But, if this is not happening, I would not see the need to have surgery to fix this.  Just because of a defect location does not automatically lead to a need for surgery.  I would definitely recommend obtaining a second opinion for your son's condition in this case.
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Jeffrey R Boris, M.D.Blank
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