Natural History of Congenital Heart Disease
Problems in Its Assessment with Special Reference to Ventricular Septal Defects
It is difficult to make prognoses and decisions on therapy of individuals with congenital heart disease (CHD) and plan efficiently for medical services and training programs because studies on the incidence and relative frequency of different types of CHD at birth, mortality rates, times of death, and prevalence rates in children and adults are incomplete or unrepresentative. The present study assesses the merits of previous surveys and attempts to indicate the best information about these rates.
Specific attention has been directed to data on ventricular septal defect (VSD), with an estimated incidence of at least 20/10,000 live births; about 10% of these children died before 15 years of age. There should thus be about 18/10,000 surviving school children with VSD, yet the most intensive school surveys show only about half this number. This supports the suggestion that there is a high incidence (perhaps 50%) of spontaneous closure of VSD during childhood. Spontaneous closure may also occur frequently after childhood, but this conclusion needs to be confirmed by better surveys.
- Incidence rates
- Spontaneous closure of ventricular septal defect
- Mortality rates
- Prevalence rates
- Age at death
- © 1968 American Heart Association, Inc.