Coarctation Of The Aorta Repair In Children
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
Coarctation Of The Aorta Repair In Children (Discharge Care) Care Guide
- Coarctation Of The Aorta Repair In Children Discharge Care
- Coarctation Of The Aorta Repair In Children Inpatient Care
- Coarctation Of The Aorta Repair In Children Precare
- En Espanol
- Coarctation (ko-ark-TA-shun) of the aorta (a-OR-tuh) is when your child is born with a narrowed area in his aorta. The aorta is the large blood vessel that takes blood away from the heart and out to the body. The narrowed area slows blood flow and makes the heart work too hard. Most children need their coarctation repaired by surgery. During surgery, the narrowed area of the aorta is cut out or patched.
- With time, new blood vessels can develop and bypass (go around) the narrow area. If your child's coarctation is not repaired, there can be problems even though other blood vessels help to move blood. These problems may include heart failure or a ruptured (burst) aorta. That is why surgery is needed to fix the narrowed area. Some people who have coarctation of the aorta are also born with a patent ductus arteriosus (r-teer-e-O-sus) (PDA). This is an opening between the pulmonary artery and the aorta that should have closed after your child was born. If your child has a PDA, it will also be closed during surgery.
AFTER YOU LEAVE:
- Keep a written list of the medicines your child takes, the amounts, and when and why they are taken. Bring the list of your child's medicines or the pill bottles when you visit your child's caregivers. Ask your child's caregiver for more information about the medicines. Do not give any medicines to your child without first asking your child's caregiver. This includes prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, herbs, or food supplements.
- Always give your child's medicine as directed by caregivers. Call your child's caregiver if you think your child's medicines are not helping. Call if you feel your child is having side effects. Do not quit giving the medicines to your child before talking to your child's caregiver. If your child is taking antibiotics (an-ti-bi-AH-tiks), give them until they are all gone. Even if your child seems to feel better.
- Never give aspirin to your child without first asking your child's caregiver. Giving aspirin to your child when he is ill may cause a very serious illness called Reye's syndrome. Read medicine labels to see if your child's medicine has aspirin.
- Your child may need antibiotics (an-ti-bi-AH-tiks) before having dental care or other procedures. Taking antibiotics first may help prevent bacterial (bak-TEER-e-ull) endocarditis (end-o-kar-DI-tis) which is an infection in the heart. Give your child his antibiotics until they are all gone.
When is my child's next medical appointment?
Ask for more information about where and when to take your child for follow-up visits:
For continuing care, treatments, or home services for your child, ask for information.
When can my child take a bath?
Ask your child's caregiver when your child may take a bath. When your child is allowed to bathe, carefully wash his stitches or staples with soap and water. Afterwards put on a clean, new bandage. Change your child's bandage any time it gets wet or dirty. Your child may have steri-strips (thin strips of tape) on his incision. Keep them clean and dry. As they start to peel off, let them fall off by themselves. Do not pull them off.
How can my child live a healthy lifestyle?
- Colds and flu: Keep your child away from people who have colds or the flu. Also try to keep your child away from large groups of people. This decreases your child's chance of getting sick or getting an infection.
- Eating right: Follow the feeding instructions given to you by your child's caregiver. Eating the right formula (or breast milk) and foods may help your child feel healthy sooner. It may also help your child heal faster.
- Smoking: It is never too late to quit smoking if you smoke. Smoking around your child can make your child sick and can harm his lungs and blood. You are more likely to have a heart attack, lung disease, and cancer if you smoke. You will help yourself and your child by not smoking. Ask your child's caregiver for information on how to stop smoking if you are having trouble quitting.
- Stress: Your child's heart problems can get worse with stress. Stress may also slow healing and cause other illness later. Since it is hard to avoid stress, help your child learn how to control it. Help your child learn new ways to relax (deep breathing, meditation, relaxing muscles, music, or biofeedback).
- Coarctation is a life-changing disease for your child and family. Accepting that your child has heart disease is hard. Your child and those close to you may feel angry, sad, or frightened. These feelings are normal. Talk to caregivers, family, or friends about your feelings, and encourage your child to talk about his feelings. Talk about how things are at home. Caregivers can help your family better understand how to support a person with heart disease.
- You may also want to join a support group. This is a group of people who also have a child with heart problems. Ask your child's caregiver for the names and numbers of support groups in your town. You can contact the following national organizations for more information.
- American Heart Association
7272 Greenville Avenue
Dallas , TX 75231-4596
Phone: 1- 800 - 242-8721
Web Address: http://www.heart.org
- National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
Health Information Center
P.O. Box 30105
Bethesda , MD 20824-0105
Phone: 1- 301 - 592-8573
Web Address: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/infoctr/index.htm
- American Heart Association
CONTACT A CAREGIVER IF:
- Your child has a fever.
- Your child's stitches or staples come apart.
- Your child's bandage becomes soaked with blood.
- The skin around your child's stitches is red, swollen, or has pus coming from the incision (cut). This may mean that your child has an infection.
- Your child has chills, a cough, or sounds congested. These are signs that your child may have an infection.
- Your child's skin is itchy, swollen, or has a rash. Your child's medicine may be causing these symptoms. This may mean your child is allergic (uh-LER-jik) to his medicine.
- Your child's coarctation symptoms return or get worse.
- You have questions or concerns about your child's health, surgery or medicine.
SEEK CARE IMMEDIATELY IF:
- Your child has trouble breathing all of a sudden.
- Your child is too dizzy to stand.
- Your child has severe pain in the chest or belly.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.