Monday, October 20, 2008

CHD Death Incidence in Infancy

Source: Patient Health Information, 13 October 2008

MedWire News: A significant number of babies are dying soon after birth because of undiagnosed congenital heart disease, a US study suggests.

To examine the extent of the problem, researchers from the University of California used the California death registry for the years 1989−2004 to assess data on 898 infants who died of congenital heart disease between birth and 1 year of age.

They found that, in total, 152 of the babies had a missed diagnosis of congenital heart disease. The average age at death was 14 days and more than half of the babies died at home or in the emergency department, indicating that they had been discharged from the postnatal ward. The team concluded that current screening methods are inadequate.

That's roughly 1 in 8 deaths with a condition previously undiagnosed that died at about 14 days. It is not clear that these children could have been saved if they had been diagnosed on time. Only time, and the creation of an adequate registry for CHD, will provide these answers.

This is one front that all CHD organizations, large and small, should be united on - creating an adequate survey of patients, births and deaths related to CHD, so that we can truly begin to understand this series of anomolies.

1 comment:

SteveC said...

I didn't know about this study, Kim! I'm going to link you up later today. (Taking a break from cleaning house right now)