Atrial Septal Defect (ASD)
ASD or Atrial Septal Defect is a congenital disability in the heart. In this condition, the wall of the upper chambers of the heart has a hole. These chambers are known as atria. Since it is a congenital disability; children are the victims of this ailment. However, in some cases, ASD may not be diagnosed until the adulthood, and that can cause serious damage to the heart and lungs. It can be fatal as well.
Signs and Symptoms
Many children who are born with atrial septal defects do not experience any associated signs. In the case of the adults, the signs may become clear after the age of 30. The common signs and symptoms may include:
- Swelling of feet, leg, and abdomen
- Shortness of breath
- Skipped beats
- Heart palpitations
- Frequent lung infection
- Heart murmur
Causes and Risk Factors
When it is a congenital disability, then the error in the development of the heart and the atria is the main cause. However, doctors are still not sure about the definite cause. Some health conditions during pregnancy can enhance the risk for the babies to born with ASD. Rubella infection, drug, alcohol or tobacco consumption, obesity, diabetes are some of the conditions during pregnancy that can enhance the risk of ASD in babies.
Some of these holes close during the childhood, and some do not. Some of the holes are so small that they do not harm. However, for the treatment, you can have medication and surgeries.