Double-Outlet Right Ventricle -- Child

Double-outlet right ventricle (DORV) is a rare heart defect. In a normal heart, the blood flows in from the body to the right atrium. It then goes into the right ventricle. Next, the blood travels to the lungs through the pulmonary valve. Here, it picks up fresh oxygen. The blood returns to the left atrium and goes into the left ventricle. The blood moves out to the rest of the body. Normally, the aorta, which is the largest artery in the body, comes from the heart’s left ventricle. But when DORV occurs, the aorta and the pulmonary artery are attached to the right ventricle. Another heart defect called ventricular septal defect (VSD) usually occurs with DORV. VSD is a hole in the wall between the right and left ventricle. DORV can be categorized into several types depending on the position of the VSD. Along with these conditions, the pulmonary valve may be narrowed. DORV is a serious condition. It requires care right away by the doctor.

  • Causes

    This condition is a congenital defect. This means that the heart forms incorrectly when the baby is developing in the womb. The baby is born with the condition. It is not known exactly why the heart develops abnormally in some babies.

  • Definition

    Double-outlet right ventricle (DORV) is a rare heart defect. In a normal heart, the blood flows in from the body to the right atrium. It then goes into the right ventricle. Next, the blood travels to the lungs through the pulmonary valve. Here, it picks up fresh oxygen. The blood returns to the left atrium and goes into the left ventricle. The blood moves out to the rest of the body.

    Normally, the aorta, which is the largest artery in the body, comes from the heart’s left ventricle. But when DORV occurs, the aorta and the pulmonary artery are attached to the right ventricle.

    Another heart defect called ventricular septal defect (VSD) usually occurs with DORV. VSD is a hole in the wall between the right and left ventricle. DORV can be categorized into several types depending on the position of the VSD.

    Along with these conditions, the pulmonary valve may be narrowed. DORV is a serious condition. It requires care right away by the doctor.

    Heart Chambers and Valves
    heart anatomy
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    Blood Flow Through the Heart
    IMAGE
    Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

  • Diagnosis


    Your doctor will ask about your child’s symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
    During the exam, the doctor may also detect a
    heart murmur.

    Images may be taken of your child's bodily structures. This can be done with:

    • Chest x-ray
    • Echocardiogram
    • MRI scan
    • Cardiac catheterization


    Your child's heart activity may be measured. This can be done with
    electrocardiogram
    (EKG).

  • Prevention

    There is no known way to prevent DORV. Getting appropriate prenatal care is always important.

  • Risk Factors

    For many heart defects, the risk factors are unclear. Some risk factors for DORV may include:

    • Family history of congenital heart defect
    • Certain chromosomal disorders

  • Symptoms

    Symptoms may vary depending on where the VSD is located. Symptoms may include:

    • Bluish skin color
    • Poor feeding/slow weight gain
    • Fatigue
    • Sweating
    • Rapid breathing
    • Shortness of breath

  • Treatment

    Talk with the doctor about the best treatment plan for your child. Often, surgery is needed right away. Treatment options include: