Patent Ductus Arteriosus is abbreviated as P.D.A
It’s the term used to describe communication between the Aorta and the Pulmonary Artery (the blood vessel that supplies the Lungs)
While a child is in the womb the ductus arteriosus is one of the vessels that exist in the child to help exchange blood but becomes unnecessary immediately the child is born, it, therefore, has to close.
Following delivery, the ductus arteriosus closes within the first few days of life on its own, If it then doesn’t close physiologically, it becomes a problem called PDA. The PDA allows the flow of blood from high-pressure vessel (Aorta) to the Pulmonary Artery which then builds up in the Lungs. This can lead to complications especially if the PDA is large.
Signs in symptoms:
- Rapid breathing
- Poor feeding
- Little weight gain
- Heart murmur
- Failure to thrive
- Chest X-ray
Initially, the patient may be placed on Indomethacin the first few days after birth (once diagnosed) as this help in closing the Ductus Arteriosus. However, if this doesn’t work, surgical intervention or device closure is required.
This can be done with a device in the Cardiac Catheterization Lab (Cath lab) or in the theatre via an open incision on the chest.
PDA ligation is usually a day case and depending on patients response, discharge can be on the same day or within 3 days.
Most Cardiac centres in Nigeria does this because it’s about the easiest procedure.