Our Madeline was born with severe Congenital Heart Defects (CHDs). You can read about the details of her story here.
Because this topic is so important to our family, we are committed to increasing awareness of these diseases that affect nearly 1 in 125 babies each year (National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Congenital Heart Defects. December 2007). Below are some other facts you may not know about CHDs:
CHD Facts (according to It’s My Heart)
- Congenital Heart Defects are the #1 birth defect. (Source: March of Dimes)
- Congenital Heart Defects are the #1 cause of birth defect related deaths. (Source: March of Dimes)
- Nearly twice as many children die from Congenital Heart Defects in the United States each year as from all forms of childhood cancers combined, yet funding for pediatric cancer research is five times higher than funding for CHD. (Source: Children’s Heart Foundation)
- The American Heart Association directs only $0.30 of every dollar donated toward research. The remainder goes toward administration, education and fundraising efforts. Of the $0.30 that goes toward research only $0.01 goes toward pediatric cardiology for CHD. (Source: Children’s Heart Foundation)
- This year approximately 4,000 babies will not live to see their first birthday because of Congenital Heart Defects. (Source: Children’s Heart Foundation)
- The cost for inpatient surgery to repair Congenital Heart Defects exceeds $2.2 billion a year. (Source: Children’s Heart Foundation)
- Of every dollar the government spends on medical funding only a fraction of a penny is directed toward Congenital Heart Defect research. (Source: Children’s Heart Foundation)
- Though research is ongoing, at least 35 defects have now been identified.
- 4-8% born with CHD have Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome
- Although some babies will be diagnosed during gestation or at birth, sometimes the diagnosis is not made until days, weeks, months, or even years after. In some cases, CHD is not detected until adolescence or adulthood. (Source: March of Dimes)
- It is a proven fact that the earlier CHD is detected and treated, it is more likely the affected child will survive and have less long term health complications. (Source: March of Dimes)
To learn more about the signs and symptoms of CHDs, or how you can help support the prevention research, please visit these helpful websites:
- It’s My Heart
- Congenital Heart Information Network
- March of Dimes: Congenital Heart Defects
- The Children’s Heart Foundation
If you are interested in participating in a CHD Awareness walk, please contact me.