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The authors briefly present two clinical cases and discuss the approach to the management of an incidental finding of patent foramen ovale (PFO) in a young child. We discuss the current controversies in the management of PFO in this age group.
Regular evaluation of physical capacity takes a crucial part in long-term follow-up in patients with congenital heart disease (CHD). This study aims to examine the accuracy of self-estimated exercise capacity compared to objective assessments by cardiopulmonary exercise testing in patients with CHD of various complexity.
We conducted a single centre, cross-sectional study with retrospective analysis on 382 patients aged 8–68 years with various CHD who completed cardiopulmonary exercise tests. Peak oxygen uptake was measured. Additionally, questionnaires covering self-estimation of exercise capacity were completed. Peak oxygen uptake was compared to patient’s self-estimated exercise capacity with focus on differences between complex and non-complex defects.
Peak oxygen uptake was 25.5 ± 7.9 ml/minute/kg, corresponding to 75.1 ± 18.8% of age- and sex-specific reference values. Higher values of peak oxygen uptake were seen in patients with higher subjective rating of exercise capacity. However, oxygen uptake in patients rating their exercise capacity as good (mean oxygen uptake 78.5 ± 1.6%) or very good (mean oxygen uptake 84.8 ± 4.8%) was on average still reduced compared to normal. In patients with non-complex cardiac defects, we saw a significant correlation between peak oxygen uptake and self-estimated exercise capacity (spearman-rho −0.30, p < 0.001), whereas in patients with complex cardiac defects, no correlation was found (spearman-rho −0.11, p < 0.255).
The mismatch between self-estimated and objectively assessed exercise capacity is most prominent in patients with complex CHD.
Registration number at Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin Ethics Committee: EA2/106/14.
Optimal pre-participative screening in young athletes is still controversial. We sought to evaluate the strategy of including point-of-care ultrasound to electrocardiogram. In total, 1188 young competitive athletes were screened in different sports institutions. This proved to be a useful strategy by improving diagnostic performance primarily with respect to detect structural abnormalities and also by minimising positive false cases of electrocardiogram alone.
Vincent van Gogh (1853–1890) is one of the most famous artists in the world. During his 10-year career as an artist, he created more than 850 paintings. These works of art are now displayed in museums around the globe. It is therefore even more surprising that van Gogh sold just one painting during his lifetime. Van Gogh is also well-known for his mental illness. In 1888, at the age of 35, he famously sliced off his left ear. This was followed by multiple mental collapses in early 1889, leading to his admission to a mental hospital. Despite living in the asylum, van Gogh continued to paint and created some of his most beautiful works of art during the year at Saint-Rémy. Tragically, he committed suicide in 1890 at the age of 37. Over the 130 years since his death, there has been much speculation about the underlying illness of Vincent van Gogh. Many of his contemporary physicians felt that he had a form of epilepsy as the cause of his sudden “attacks”. By the last quarter of the 19th century, science and medicine were moving rapidly forward, and there were many medical conditions that had effective treatments. One example is the use of digoxin for the treatment of heart failure, and another is the discovery of potassium bromide for seizures. This paper provides an overview of van Gogh’s mental illness, the treatments that were offered by his contemporaneous physicians, and the role that these factors may have influenced his paintings.
A diagnosis of Brugada pattern in paediatric or adolescent patients is rare. COVID-19 is characterised by fevers and a pro-inflammatory state, which may serve as inciting factors for Brugada pattern. Recently described in two adult patients, we report the first case of Brugada pattern in an adolescent with COVID-19.
We report a case of Figulla-II Occlutech septal occluder malposition with residual shunt at posteriosuperior margin of an atrial septal defect. Improvising its bioptome type delivery cable, same system was used to recapture the device and redeploy it successfully. This report highlights a potential malfunction of Figulla-II Occlutech disc and the advantage of its delivery system for retrieval of the device.
Femoral vein access is the first choice for percutaneous atrial septal defect closure, and when it cannot be used due to anatomic reasons, the alternative sites should be considered, frequently increasing the complexity of the procedure. Here we report the case of a 3-year-old boy, with situs inversus and dextrocardia, electively referred for percutaneous closure of an ostium secundum atrial septal defect. During the procedure, agenesis of the infra-hepatic segment of the inferior caval vein was diagnosed, and no double inferior caval vein or right superior caval vein were identified by ultrasound or angiography. Therefore, we opted to perform the procedure through the left internal jugular vein, with fluoroscopy and transesophageal echocardiographic guidance. Catheters were navigated through a hydrophilic guidewire, and a Stiff guidewire was positioned in the left ventricle for better support. An Amplatzer septa occluder 19 was successfully deployed without major difficulties and the patient was discharged after 24 hours in good clinical condition. Percutaneous atrial septal defect closure through alternative access sites, especially in the presence of situs inversus, may pose significant challenges to the interventional team. In this case, the left internal jugular vein has shown to be a feasible option, allowing the navigation and manipulation of devices without complications. Provided the expertise of the interventional team, and awareness of the risks involved, alternative access sites can be successfully used for paediatric structural interventions.
Cyanosis in a newborn is commonly due to intracardiac shunts or duct-dependent lesions. Systemic venous anomalies are uncommon and sinus venous atrial septal defects do not usually present with cyanosis. We report the case of a 4-month-old female with persistent hypoxemia due to a right superior vena cava overriding a superior sinus venous atrial septal defect resulting in a right to left shunt.
Only few reports have described successful simultaneous transcatheter intervention for CHD in infants. We present an infant with secundum atrial septal defect complicated by valvular pulmonary stenosis. Percutaneous transcatheter pulmonary valvuloplasty was performed first, followed by transcatheter closure of the secundum atrial septal defect uneventfully. Simultaneous transcatheter correction is an effective therapeutic option even in infants.