Without medicines and a series of three surgeries to rebuild the heart,
babies with hypoplastic
left heart syndrome (HLHS) won't survive. The left side of the heart can't be
fixed, so the goal of the surgeries is to rebuild parts of the heart and "redirect"
the way blood flows.
After the Norwood procedure,
babies get the Glenn procedure when they're between 4 and 6 months
old. This is because they outgrow the shunt placed during the Norwood procedure.
The shunt placed during the Norwood procedure is removed.
Blood from the upper body now goes to the pulmonary artery, and then to the lungs,
without having to go to the heart. Because blood can now get to the lungs, the shunt
is no longer needed. Also, the right ventricle now has a single job: pumping blood
to the body.
What Happens After the Glenn Procedure?
Babies who have the Glenn procedure usually spend 1 to 2 weeks in the hospital
to recover. They get-around-the-clock care and monitoring. They also get medicines
to help the heart and improve blood flow.
What's the Next Procedure?
The third surgery is called the Fontan
procedure. It's usually done when a child is 18 to 36 months (3 years)