Thursday, 7 February 2013

#CongenitalHeartDefects #AwarenessWeek 2013!! #CHD

Today marks the start of CHD Awareness Week 2013... 

CHD stands for Congenital Heart Defect and is an abnormality of the heart which occurs soon after conception and often before the mother is aware that she is pregnant. The defects can range in severity from simple problems, such as “holes” between chambers of the heart, to very severe malformations, such as complete absence of one or more chambers or valves....

I am not talking about something I know nothing about....

I have a Congenital Heart Defect and both my girls have Congenital Heart Defect's...More about this over the next few days!!

Congenital Heart Defects, also known as CHD’s are the #1 birth defect in UK affecting 8/1000 live births....This does not count all the children lost in pregnancy to CHD’s

There are 35+ medically recognised CHD’s..
Some of which are Aortic Stenosis, Atrial Septal Defect, Atrio-ventricular Septal Defect, Cardiomyopathy, Complex Transposition of the Great Arteries, Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome (HRHS), Pulmonary Stenosis, Tetralogy of Fallot, Transposition of the Great Arteries and Ventricular Septal Defect....

CHD’s are the #1 cause of DEATH from a birth defect killing twice as many children as cancer every year.

Congenital Heart Defects are not always found during pregnancy or at birth, many are not found till childhood, adolescence, adulthood or after death when it is too late.

Serious congenital heart defects usually become evident during the first few hours, days, weeks and months of life.

Signs and symptoms could include: 

Loss of healthy skin color
Pale gray or blue skin color (cyanosis)
Rapid breathing
Swelling in the legs, abdomen or areas around the eyes
Shortness of breath during feedings, leading to poor weight gain
Many Dr’s believe that CHD’s are genetic, although most people know nothing of Heart Defects till they have a child born with one....

CHD’s can not be cured, the heart must be monitored throughout life. Some will need multiple open heart surgeries, some may even need a heart transplant.

Babies born with CHD’s may need their first open heart surgery at just a few hours or days old.

It has been estimated that there are currently 250,000 adults with a CHD in the UK, approximately 1,000,000 in the US and similar numbers in proportional terms in Europe and the rest of the world....

Various procedures are used to help repair the heart to prevent the need for surgery but not enough is being done in the UK to raise awareness of heart problems. Awareness is the key for hope and survival for sufferers and their families as it is often a silent killer.

Please remember that Congenital heart disease is the most frequent form of major birth defects in newborns affecting close to 1% of newborn babies 8 per 1,000!!!

If you don’t know someone with a CHD sooner or later you will!!

Retweets & shares appreciated!! 

Thank you :)


  1. my nephew has a chd. one of those hidden illnesses. He had surgery when he was 6 weeks old and since then has thrived. he is 4 now and fit and healthy.

  2. No I wansnt CHD aware until I read this. Good info.