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Can I Have A Baby If I Have A Congenital Heart Defect?

Preparing for pregnancy

  • An extensive check-up: Even if you feel fine, I want to prove it. Testing options become limited once you get pregnant, so planning ahead is important. We ask that both parents attend the visit so everyone is aware of the risks involved.
  • Changes to your medications: Your safety and your baby’s safety are our top priority. Some heart medications can harm babies in the womb, so we will likely change or adjust your medications throughout the pregnancy.
  • Recommended interventions: Depending on your condition, we may recommend a heart procedure before you try to conceive. For example, I may recommend a diagnostic heart catheterization to repair a hole in your heart or a balloon procedure to open a blocked valve.

Risks during pregnancy and delivery

Who should not get pregnant?

  • Heart shunts from right to left
  • Oxygen levels below 85 percent
  • Severe left-sided obstructive lesions (aortic stenosis, mitral stenosis, left ventricular outflow tract obstruction, coarctation of the aorta)
  • Severe pulmonary hypertension
  • Marfan syndrome with a significantly enlarged aorta
  • History of prior cardiovascular events, such as arrhythmia, stroke, or heart failure

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