Ventricular septal defect (VSD)
A ventricular septal defect is a hole in the wall that separates the lower two chambers of our heart. When this hole does not close during fetal development, oxygen rich blood pumps back to the right side of the heart and back to the lungs, causing high blood pressure and reduced oxygen to the body. This defect is congenital (present at birth) and is most common defect found with newborns. It is not as common with adults as some VSD’s close on their own. Smaller ventricular septal defects are typically found in adults and usually do not cause symptoms. However, even smaller VSD’s can be a source of infection in the heart called endocarditis.
Depending on the size of your VSD and whether you have had an instance of endocarditis, or infection, because of your defect, your Novant Health provider may recommend a closure of the VSD with surgery or with a device that will “plug” the hole during cardiac catheterization.