Our heart has four chambers, two auricles, and two ventricles. Through the pulmonary artery, the deoxygenated blood is sent to the lungs for oxygenation and return to the heart via pulmonary veins for redistribution in the body.
In some cases, especially in newborn children, a rare defect is observed where the pulmonary veins get attached into other sites in the heart instead of the correct position of the upper right heart chamber, also known as the right atrium and mixes with the oxygen-deficient blood in there or before entering the heart. This defect is congenital. The blood supply may continue through an Atrial Septal Defect, also present in the child just born.
The surgery for treating this error where the cardiac surgeon connects the pulmonary veins to the left atria and closes any hole between the two atria is known as Total anomalous pulmonary venous connection (or return) repair or TAPVC Repair, otherwise called an Arterial Switch.
The symptoms of this condition are more prevalent and detectable after the birth of the baby.
- A grey-blue skin color, also known as cyanosis.
- Hurried breathing or having problems in inhaling.
- Withdrawal of rib-cage muscles.
- Less feeding than normal.
- Sluggish and strenuous heartbeat.
- Showing lethargy or extended periods of idleness.
- Heart murmur, a whooshing sound heard through a stethoscope during a physical examination.
- Persistent issues in heart rhythms (arrhythmias or dysrhythmias).
- Obstruction in one or more pulmonary veins.
- Abnormal electrical activity in the atrium.
- Infections in the operation site.
- Presence of rapid or slow heartbeats.
- Need for additional cardiac surgery.
Management of TAPVR with medicines is not a correct decision, as the defect of the heart is structural, and can be permanently solved using surgery only. According to the age of the patient, development of the health indicators, and the emergency of the children, the pediatric doctor may mention the subsequent guidelines for before, during and after the surgery;