Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Health: Heart Week

This is Heart Week in Australia 4th - 10th May 2014.  

We know that children with Down syndrome have a very high incidence of congenital heart
disease, and that much of the recent increase in life expectancy is attributable to advances and access to reparative surgery.  This recent study of surgical outcomes indicates that they generally do very well after cardiac surgery:

Study shows promise for heart surgery patients with Down syndrome
American Heart Association (blog), 22nd April 2014
A large national study suggests that children with Down syndrome ... do not face additional risks when undergoing heart surgery. In addition, the children may actually have a better chance of survival while hospitalized compared with other pediatric heart patients ...
This story, written by a US mother, will be familiar to many:
Heart So Bright
Melissa Stoltz, Down Syndrome Blogs, 24th February 2014
My daughter was born in June 2010 and surprised as with a diagnosis of translocation Down syndrome and a complete atrialventricular canal. A CAVC is a common heart defect for babies with Down syndrome, and though the treatment and repair have become routine, it is anything but routine when it is your own child slipping into heart failure while waiting for life-saving surgery ...

Further information about congenital heart disease, and support for children and their families experiencing it can be found here:

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