Atrioventricular canal defect is a combination of heart problems resulting in a defect in the center of the heart . The condition occurs when there's a hole between the heart's chambers and problems with the valves that regulate blood flow in the heart. The condition is often associated with Down syndrome. Atrioventricular canal defect allows extra blood to flow to the lungs. Untreated, atrioventricular canal defect can cause heart failure and high blood pressure in the lungs.
All children with AVSD with and without DS born in Sweden 1973-1997 were followed up retrospectively to 2001. Children with isolated AVSD without complex additional CHDs were studied more closely . A reduction in age at operation and postoperative mortality (from 28 to 1%) was observed. No significant difference in 5-year postoperative mortality between genders or between,DS and non-DS children was found. The 5-year postoperative mortality in DS decreased from 35% in 1973-77 to about 10% in 1993-97.
Patients with incomplete atrioventricular septal defects (AVSDs) present with signs and symptoms similar to those of secundum atrial septal defects (ASDs) and, as such, rarely require medical therapy. Medical therapy in patients with complete atrioventricular septal defects consists of aggressive anticongestive treatment for the signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure (CHF). The mainstays of medical therapy are furosemide (for diuresis for the volume-overloaded heart), digoxin (as a mild inotrope), and ACE inhibitors (for afterload reduction).