Coarctation of the aorta (CoA) is a relatively common defect that accounts for 5-8% of all congenital heart defects. Coarctation of the aorta may occur as an isolated defect or in association with various other lesions, most commonly bicuspid aortic valve and ventricular septal defect (VSD). It imposes significant afterload on the left ventricle (LV), which results in increased wall stress and compensatory ventricular hypertrophy.
Treatment in patients with Aortic Coarctation includes the use of diuretics and inotropic drugs. Prostaglandin E1 (0.05-0.15 mcg/kg/min) is infused intravenously to open the ductus arteriosus. Ventilatory assistance is provided to patients with markedly increased work of breathing. Infusion of inotropic drugs (dopamine, dobutamine, epinephrine) is useful when ventricular dysfunction is present, especially with hypotension. A Foley catheter is inserted to monitor renal perfusion and urine output.
Aortic Coarctation refer to structural or functional heart diseases, which are present at birth. Some of these lesions may be discovered later. The reported incidence of congenital heart disease is 8-10/1000 live births according to various series from different parts of the world. It is believed that this incidence has not changed much over the years. Nearly 33% to 50% of these defects are critical, requiring intervention in the first year of life itself.