Children with double inlet left ventricle need surgery to correct the condition. Surgery does not give them normal circulation. But it may allow their heart to pump blood better to their lungs and the rest of their body.
Double Inlet Left Ventricle Treatment Options
The surgery is done in stages during the first few years of life. The goals of the surgeries are:
- To direct oxygen-poor blood, which comes from around your child’s body, to blood vessels that go to their lungs, without going into their heart first. In their lungs, this blood can pick up oxygen.
- To keep oxygen-rich blood, which comes from their lungs, flowing into their working ventricle. From there, it can be pumped to the rest of their body.
The exact procedures and timing depend on your child’s condition, including how severe it is and whether they have other heart defects, too.
Your child may need medicines like these, before and after surgery:
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, which lower blood pressure
- Digoxin, which makes the heart beat slower and with more force
- Anticoagulants, which help prevent or dissolve blood clots
In some cases, a heart transplant is needed. The heart transplant team at Seattle Children’s performs numerous transplants each year for children with this or other heart problems that cannot be controlled using other treatments. Read more about our heart transplant program.