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Atrial Septal Defect Transcatheter Closure in Children


Atrial septal defect (ASD) transcatheter closure is also called ASD closure. ASD closure is done to close a hole in your child's heart.



  • Antibiotics may be given to help prevent a heart infection called bacterial endocarditis. Your child may need to take antibiotics before dental or other procedures for up to 6 months after his ASD closure. Tell caregivers about your child's ASD procedure. Your child should always take antibiotics as directed by his primary healthcare provider (PHP) or cardiologist.
  • Blood thinners may be given to help prevent blood clots. Clots can cause strokes or heart attacks, and can be life-threatening. Blood thinners make it more likely for your child to bleed or bruise. Follow these and other safety precautions you receive:
    • Watch for bleeding from your child's gums or nose. Watch for blood in his urine and bowel movements. Use a soft washcloth on your child's skin and a soft toothbrush on his teeth to keep his skin and gums from bleeding. Your child should not play contact sports, such as football.
    • Many medicines cannot be used with blood thinners. Tell your child's dentist and other caregivers that your child takes blood-thinning medicine. Your child should wear or carry medical alert information that says he is taking this medicine.
    • Tell your child's PHP right away if you forget to give your child the medicine, or if he has taken too much. Your child will need to have a blood test called the INR regularly. The INR shows how long it takes your child's blood to clot. Your child's PHP will use the INR results to decide how much medicine is right for him.
    • Talk to your child's PHP about the foods he eats. This medicine works best when your child eats about the same amount of vitamin K every day. Vitamin K is found mainly in green leafy vegetables. Ask your child's dietitian or PHP for a list of foods that are high in vitamin K.
  • Give your child's medicine as directed: Call your child's PHP if you think the medicine is not working as expected. Tell him if your child is allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs your child takes. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why they are taken. Bring the list or the medicines in their containers to follow-up visits. Carry your child's medicine list with you in case of an emergency. Throw away old medicine lists.
  • Do not give aspirin to children younger than 18 years of age. Your child could develop Reye syndrome if he takes aspirin. Reye syndrome can cause life-threatening brain and liver damage. Check your child's medicine labels for aspirin, salicylates, or oil of wintergreen.

Follow up with your child's PHP or cardiologist as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.


Encourage your child to rest as much as needed. Help your child be less active for at least 2 days after the ASD closure. Help your child to play quietly or lie flat as much as possible the night after the ASD closure. Ask when he can return to his daily activities, such as bathing, outdoor play, sports, or school.

Wound care:

  • Dress your child in loose clothing for the first few days after the ASD closure. This will keep the skin around the catheter wound from being irritated while it heals. It is normal for your child to have a small amount of bruising and soreness where the catheters were placed. This area may hurt for a few days.
  • Carefully wash your child's wound with soap and water. Dry the area and put on new, clean bandages as directed. Change your child's bandages when they get wet or dirty.

Contact your child's PHP or cardiologist if:

  • Your child has a fever or chills.
  • Your child has nausea or vomiting that does not go away.
  • You have questions or concerns about your child's condition or care.

Seek care immediately or call 911 if:

  • Your child has any of the following signs of a stroke:
    • Part of his face droops or is numb
    • Weakness in an arm or leg
    • Confusion or difficulty speaking
    • Dizziness, a severe headache, or vision loss
  • Your child feels lightheaded, short of breath, and has chest pain.
  • Your child coughs up blood.
  • Your child's arm or leg feels warm, and is tender and painful. It may look swollen and red.
  • Your child starts to bleed from his catheter site.
  • Your child's wound is red, swollen, or draining pus.
  • The bruise where the catheter went into your child gets bigger and is swollen.
  • The limb where the catheter was placed is numb, painful, or changes color.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.