01 July 2005

Pediatric cardiology

Remember the murmur? That’s right, a slight murmur in Collette’s heart. Nothing to worry about, says our pediatrician. But she referred us to the pediatric cardiologist so that he could tell us what was up. Collette has a hole in her heart.

Okay, my big question, why didn’t the early pediatricians pick up on the heart murmur? I suppose a murmur may be somewhat expected in a newly born baby. Possibly two reasons: 1. The heart actually has to go through some changes at birth to accomadate gases entering into the lung. Before this change is complete a soft murmur may be audible. 2. Collette’s hole is now healing, thus contracting the space that liquid flows. It’s like putting a spray nozzle on a hose, the liquid flows faster and louder. The murmur is now more noticable.

The good news is: out of all the congenital birth defects there are to have, the cardiologist is sure this he would choose Collette’s condition above all else. She has a ventrical septal defect. A hole between her two ventricals. Unfortunately she’ll have to take antibiotics anytime there is a chance an open wound could get infected (as this may lead to infection in her heart). But her activity level should be normal. And, if anything, SCUBA diving is a high risk activity for her (higher risk of stroke during ascent).

Above all else, Collette is an amazing baby to have around. A few nights ago she went down around 9:00 pm and woke up at 5:15 am. Laura actually woke up earlier thinking something was wrong. Apparently Collette likes to sleep as much as I do.