What is congenital heart disease (CHD)?
From the minute a woman falls pregnant until the baby is born, the parents spend their time worrying about their baby and its health.
The mother will change many things such as her diet, her exercise routine and her sleeping pattern. She will avoid alcohol and certain medications, whilst starting others, predominantly vitamins and other supplements in order to ensure the baby’s optimal development. Regular visits to the doctor are undertaken and other antenatal classes are enrolled in. In short, in an ideal world, every conceivable step is taken to ensure the health of both the mother and the baby.
Unfortunately, though, even with all a mother does in order to keep her unborn baby safe, some medical conditions cannot be prevented. (One must also remember that thorough antenatal care is a luxury only a handful of mothers in poorer countries have access to.)
Children who are born with congenital heart disease (CHD), have defects in the structure of their heart. These defects happen very early in pregnancy while the heart is being formed.