If a woman should go into labor before thirty-seven weeks of gestation, the baby born at that time is considered to be premature. In many cases premature infants tend to have some form of heart impairment arising from heart disease or defect. The incidence of heart malfunction in premature babies is rather alarming.
Premature infants do not have fully formed organs, and because of this the baby has to be cared for in a neonatal nursery or neonatal intensive care unit until such time as they have developed and strengthened enough to continue living without medical support. However premature infants suffer from many other symptoms, not only heart disease. Some common symptoms are hyaline membrane disease, poor ability to feed, inactivity, enlarged clitoris in females, small scrotum in males, weak cry, body hair, breathing apnea as well as many others.
Heart disease in premature infants is not completely avoidable although there are treatment protocols that may be followed to treat this. These premature infants are unable before 34 weeks gestation, to suck and swallow at the same time, so many are fed by a tube inserted into the stomach or in very small infants into a vein.
Complications in premature infants may not necessarily be related to the premature birth but there are many serious complications that can occur as well as heart disease. Some of these are hyaline membrane disease, retinopathy, low blood glucose, bleeding in the brain, jaundice, anemia, growth retardation as well as mental-motor and developmental retardation.
There is absolutely no way for a woman to prevent premature labor and the delivery of a premature infant. But there are ways to ensure you are taking the correct steps to minimize the chances of this happening. One of the most important is to receive good prenatal care early and continue throughout the pregnancy. Statistics do indicate that early, proper and continued prenatal care make a huge impact on reducing the odds of giving premature birth and its related risks and deaths.
During pregnancy it is also extremely important to take care of your own health as well. It is vital to eat nutrient rich foods, including fruits and vegetables, daily exercise and drink adequate amounts of water. Although the combination of premature infants and heart disease is a serious situation, with modern medical technology and better methods to lessen the chances of occurrence, the chances of pulling out of this medical quandary are getting better with each day.
Heart Disease In Children
It is amazing that few people are aware that a child can suffer from heart disease. Many people think that heart disease only affects the aged. Heart disease is a very serious problem and child heart disease is in fact a relatively common ailment worldwide. Child heart disease or congenital heart defects are recognized as one of the most widely known birth defects of all. There are statistics to prove that worldwide nearly one percent of all babies born are affected by some form of heart malfunction. These infants are usually diagnosed as having child heart disease upon examination by their pediatrician at birth. Sometimes this is usually referred to as a heart murmur.
Information About Child Heart Malfunction
A child’s heart might have a slight abnormality that may not even be noticeable at birth and therefore it might be difficult to detect any heart malfunction. But normally if a child has a heart defect there is a small hole in the wall of the heart that allows oxygenated and deoxygenated blood to move from one side of the heart to the other. This causes the infant to have either blue fingers or lips.
A problem that might also be experienced is an abnormal heart valve. The consequences are that the blood flows through the heart in the wrong direction. This type of child heart malfunction usually calls for surgery but this is normally performed when the child is older.
What A Heart Murmur Is
A heart murmur is the sound made by the blood flowing through the heart. This sound has been described as akin to the sound of water flowing through a hose. Heart murmurs occur frequently in infants, many are harmless, but others may create serious health risks for the child.
A heart murmur is a common sign of the evidence of child heart malfunction. In many instances the heart murmur is referred to as being ‘innocent’ or ‘functional’. Naturally parents do become extremely worried when the term is used to describe their child’s ailment. But a heart murmur does not necessarily mean that there is anything seriously amiss with the infant.
With the significant advances in medical technology in the last decade, parents can be assured that there will be a suitable course of treatment to alleviate their child’s heart disease.