Heart and Blood Conditions

Ventricular Septal Defect Symptoms and Diagnosis

Symptoms of Ventricular Septal Defect

A small ventricular septal defect (VSD) may cause no symptoms at all. A larger defect may cause symptoms soon after birth.

Children may have symptoms like these:

  • Fast breathing or working hard to breathe
  • Arrhythmia  
  • Frequent respiratory infections
  • Trouble eating or gaining weight ( failure to thrive )
  • Pale skin

Large defects that aren't treated can increase the risk for certain heart or blood problems later in life, like high blood pressure in the lungs .

Ventricular Septal Defect Diagnosis

To diagnose this condition, your doctor will examine your child, check their heartbeat and use a stethoscope to listen to their heart. In children with VSD, doctors can often hear a heart murmur .

The doctor will ask for details about your child's symptoms, their health history and your family health history.

Your child will most likely need echocardiography and  electrocardiogram .

They may need other tests that provide more information about how their heart looks and works. These include  chest X-rays  or  MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)  of the heart,  angiography  and  cardiac catheterization .

Contact Us

Contact the Heart Center at 206-987-2015 for a cardiac referral, a second opinion or more information.