Tetralogy of Fallot
DefinitionTetralogy of Fallot (TOF) is a combination of 4 heart defects. It is present at birth. These defects make it difficult for your child to get oxygen to the entire body.The defects are:
- Ventricular septal defect (VSD)—A hole in the heart. It is on a wall that separates the 2 lower chambers.
- Overriding aorta—The aorta, which is the body's largest artery coming out of the left ventricle, partially covers or comes out of the right ventricle.
- Pulmonary stenosis—The valve in the heart that allows blood to pass from the heart toward the lungs is too narrow.
- Right ventricular hypertrophy—The muscle on the right side of the heart is too thick.
CausesA child's heart develops very early in pregnancy. TOF is caused by a problem during this development. It is not known exactly why these problems happen. Some have been associated with genetics, mother's nutrition, or infections. Most have no known cause.
|Ventricular Septal Defect|
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
Risk FactorsFactors that may increase the risk of TOF include:
- Family history
- Mother's use of retinoic acid
- Mother's use of oral fluconazole
- Mother's alcohol use
- Mother has infection with rubella
- Pregnancy in mothers over 40
- Maternal diabetes
More from Beliefnet
A systematic review found that participants given chewing gum after abdominal surgery may have a faster return to normal for their digestive system. Unfortunately, the quality of trials is low and more research will need to be done before this simple solution is confirmed.
Early Peanut Consumption Associated with Lower Risk of Peanut Allergy in High Risk Children
Breastfeeding May Decrease the Risk of Childhood Obesity
Tonsillectomy May Reduce Number of Sore Throat Days in Children