Atrioventricular Septal Defect

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  • Atrioventricular septal defect (ASD) is characterised by a lack of separation between the right atrium and the left ventricle. This complex congenital heart defect can include atrial, atrioventricular and ventricular shunts, and rarely isolated ventricular shunts. There are two basic forms – a single, common AV valve and two valves within a common fibrous valve ring.

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    Atrioventricular septal defect (ASD) is characterised by a lack of separation between the right atrium and the left ventricle. This complex congenital heart defect can include atrial, atrioventricular and ventricular shunts, and rarely isolated ventricular shunts. There are two basic forms – a single, common AV valve and two valves within a common fibrous valve ring.

    Operations for ASD carry substantial risks, and these are one of the most challenging groups of children for cardiac surgeons and anaesthetists. Children with AVSDs have significant morbidity and mortality resulting from postoperative left atrioventricular valve regurgitation, residual intracardiac shunts, postoperative pulmonary hypertension, and life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias. Improved surgical outcomes during infancy increase the risk of complications such as atrial and ventricular arrhythmias later in life.

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