Total anomalous pulmonary venous return. Hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Truncus arteriosus. Terms like these speak volumes to the parents of children with severe congenital heart defects.
Heart defects occur in about 1 in 100 babies, or about 40,000 U.S. newborns per year. While any such problem can be terrifying, the surgeries required for the most severe defects are particularly risky, and the road to a healthy childhood is especially long.
Some hospitals have more experience than others in treating the most severe forms of congenital heart disease (CHD), and it is to those hospitals that many parents choose to turn if their child needs a high-risk operation. Studies show the more experience a hospital and its surgical team have in performing high-risk operations, the better the outcomes they tend to achieve.
Issue 12, Volume 6