An atrial septostomy is a surgical procedure needed for patients who have an atrial septal defect, one of the heart defects associated with hypoplastic left heart syndrome. The procedure expands the atrial septal defect so the blood from both of the heart’s upper chambers can mix together, improving the overall level of oxygen in the blood. Normally, this procedure can be performed in a cardiac catheterization lab or at the child’s bedside. Guided by ultrasound, the procedure typically uses a small balloon to expand the atrial defect. Babies are sedated with general anesthesia for this procedure, and pain relievers are given. After the procedure, patients will be closely monitored in the cardiac critical care section of the hospital. Overall, the procedure carries a low risk, and possible side effects include bruising, bleeding, infections, blood clots, and heart rhythm issues.
Keep reading to reveal more options for treating hypoplastic left heart syndrome now.