A Foundation for CHD Research

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WHAT IS CHD?

CHD stands for Congenital Heart Disease or Congenital Heart Defect

A Congenital Heart Defect is present at birth, and in most cases, has no known cause or origin. Heart defects are an abnormality in the heart’s structure or in the vessels near the heart.

+ - ARE THERE DIFFERENT TYPES OF CHD?

There are 18 recognized, distinct forms of CHD (with  some individualized variations) Some types include: [1]

  • Holes between the chambers of the heart
  • Absent or abnormal valves
  • Narrowed or abnormal vessels
  • Underdeveloped ventricle or pumping chamber of the heart

+ - HOW COMMON IS CHD?

About 40,000 babies are born with CHD each year in the U.S.

That’s about one child every 15 minutes.

Making CHD the number 1 birth defect and the most common cause of infant death [2]

+ - WHAT CAUSES CHD?

  • 85-90% of congenital heart defects have no known cause or origin
  • Approximately 5% are due to chromosomal abnormalities
  • 3-5% are due to single gene defects
  • About 2% are attributed to environmental factors 

[3]

+ - HOW IS CHD DIAGNOSED?

Often, more severe heart defects are detected during routine ultrasound during pregnancy. Others may be discovered shortly after birth. Some less severe heart defects may not be diagnosed until later in childhood when signs and symptoms emerge. [4]

+ - WHAT TREATMENTS ARE AVAILABLE FOR CHD?

Very mild defects may resolve on their own as the child grows. Other defects may require medication, catheterization, or even heart surgery. Approximately one third of children born with CHD will require some type of intervention within the first year of their life for survival.[3]

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