Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)enparentshttps://kidshealth.org/EN/images/headers/P-tetralogyOfFallot-enHD-AR2.jpgTetralogy of Fallot (TOF) is a combination of problems caused by a birth defect that changes the way blood flows through the heart.tetralogy of fallot, fallot, heart murmur, my child has a heart defect, congenital defect, heart defect, heart defects, heart problem, heart problems, heart, congenital heart defects, heart abnormalities, common heart defects, heart surgery, my baby's heart, my child's heart, heart chambers, heart valves, pulmonary valves, arteries, blood vessels, stethoscopes, pediatricians, heart doctors, pulmonologists, pediatric cardiologists, cardiology, chest x-ray, ecg, ekg, echocardiogram, pulmonary stenosis, atrial septal defect, ventricular septal defect, aortic stenosis, pulmonary stenosis, hole in the heart, march of dimes, congenital birth defects, congenital birth defect, neonatal, neonatology, cardiac, cyanosis, blue skin, blue lips, blue fingers, baby was born with a heart problem, CD1Congenital Heart Defects, CD1Cardiac Catheterization, CD1Heart Surgery, CD1Congenital Heart Defects, CD1Cardiac Catheterization, CD1Heart Surgery, CD1Tetralogy of Fallot, pulmonary atresia, jimmy kimmel, jimmy kimmel's son, shaun white01/25/201210/16/201809/02/2019Gina Baffa, MD05/03/2017c6d7839a-671c-43c0-8640-d2bc42753eeehttps://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/tetralogy-of-fallot.html/<h3>What Is Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)?</h3> <p>Tetralogy of Fallot (fah-LO) is a congenital (present at birth) heart defect. In tetralogy of Fallot (<strong>TOF</strong>), four related heart defects change the way blood flows to the lungs and through the heart.</p> <p>TOF is repaired through open-heart surgery soon after birth or later in infancy. Some infants need more than one heart surgery. Most babies who are treated do very well, but will need regular follow-up visits with a heart specialist.</p> <h3>What Happens in&nbsp;Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)?</h3> <p>In most cases of tetralogy of Fallot, too little blood goes to the lungs. This low-oxygen (blue) blood then circulates to the rest of the body, and&nbsp;too little oxygen reaches the body tissues.</p> <p><img class="left" title="" src="https://kidshealth.org/EN/images/illustrations/tetrologyFallot_433x259_enIL.png" alt="illustration: tetrology of fallot" /></p> <p>Babies with TOF often have <strong>cyanosis</strong>&nbsp;&mdash; a blue or purple tint to the baby's skin, lips, and fingernails.</p> <p>If tetralogy of Fallot isn't treated, a child may have:</p> <ul> <li>cyanosis that gets worse</li> <li>spells where the blood oxygen levels become very low</li> <li>dizziness, fainting, or seizures</li> <li>a higher risk of endocarditis, an infection of the inner layer of the heart</li> <li>high pressure in the right side of the heart that can cause an irregular heartbeat (an <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/arrhythmias.html/">arrhythmia</a>)</li> </ul> <p>Children whose TOF isn't fixed usually become increasingly blue over time and have difficulty participating in physical activities (like playing sports). Most babies who have surgery to correct the defect do very well and can participate in normal kid activities.</p> <h3>How Does Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) Affect the Heart?</h3> <p>"Tetralogy" means a combination of four related symptoms or problems. The four problems of tetralogy of Fallot are:</p> <ol class="kh_longline_list"> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/vsd.html/">Ventricular septal defect (VSD)</a></strong>, which is a hole in the septum, or wall, separating the two lower chambers, or ventricles, of the heart. The septum normally acts as a barrier that prevents blood from both sides of the heart from mixing. But when there is a VSD, the high-oxygen blood from the left ventricle and the low-oxygen blood from the right ventricle can mix. This can lead to either too little or too much blood flow going to the lungs. The VSD in children with TOF is usually large.</li> <li><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/pulmonary-stenosis.html/"><strong>Pulmonary stenosis</strong></a>, a narrowing or thickening of the valve that connects the right ventricle to the pulmonary artery, the blood vessel that carries low-oxygen blood from the heart to the lungs. When in the lungs, blood normally soaks up the oxygen that we breathe and becomes red, oxygen-rich blood. This red blood returns to the heart, and then is pumped to the body.<br /><br />With pulmonary stenosis, the heart has to work harder than normal to pump blood to the lungs. There is also less blood traveling to the lungs because the pathway is narrowed. This leads to less blood becoming red, oxygen-rich blood. Sometimes, infants with TOF have <strong>pulmonary atresia</strong>, where the pulmonary valve is completely sealed off.</li> <li><strong>Right ventricular hypertrophy</strong> (hi-PER-truh-fee), which is a thickening of the muscular wall of the right ventricle. The thickened wall can contribute to blocking the flow of blood through the pulmonary valve, which allows blood from the heart to flow into the lungs.</li> <li>An "<strong>overriding aorta</strong>," which means the artery that carries high-oxygen blood to the body is out of place and arises above both ventricles, instead of just the left ventricle, as in a healthy heart. This allows some blood that is low in oxygen to flow into the aorta and out to the body, instead of to the pulmonary artery, which would normally take it to the lungs to pick up oxygen.</li> </ol> <h3>What Are the Signs of Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)?</h3> <p>Cyanosis is a very common sign. Healthy babies can sometimes also have bluish skin around the mouth or eyes from prominent veins under the skin, but their lips and tongue look pink. Babies who have low oxygen levels in the blood usually have blue lips and tongues in addition to bluish skin.</p> <p>A child with TOF might have sudden episodes of deep cyanosis, called "hypercyanotic spells" or "Tet spells," during crying or feeding. Older children who have Tet spells will often instinctively squat down, which helps to stop the spell.</p> <p>Other signs include:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/murmurs.html/">heart murmur</a></li> <li>fussiness</li> <li>tiring easily</li> <li>difficulty breathing</li> <li>rapid heartbeat (palpitations)</li> <li>fainting</li> <li>"clubbing," where the skin or bones around the tips of fingers are widened or rounded</li> </ul> <h3>What Causes Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)?</h3> <p>The specific cause of tetralogy of Fallot isn't always known. The TOF changes in a baby's heart develop in the early weeks of pregnancy. In some cases, there are genetic causes of TOF &mdash; for example, children with <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/down-syndrome.html/">Down syndrome</a> or DiGeorge syndrome are more likely to have TOF. Someone born with TOF is more likely to have a child or sibling with it. Each year, roughly 1 out of every 2,500 babies born in the United States have the condition.</p> <p>Babies of mothers who get <a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/german-measles.html/">rubella (German measles)</a> or other viral illnesses during their pregnancies are at a higher risk for TOF. Other pregnancy-related risks include poor nutrition, alcohol abuse, poorly controlled diabetes, and the mother's age (over 40). Certain environmental factors, such as air pollution, also may increase a mother's chances of having a baby with TOF.</p> <p>Most of the time, a child with TOF doesn't have any other birth defects.</p> <h3>How Is Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) Diagnosed?</h3> <p>Doctors might do several tests to find out if a baby has tetralogy of Fallot and to get more details about the baby's heart and blood vessels, including:</p> <ul> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/pulse-oximetry.html/">pulse oximeter</a>:</strong> a small sensor that clips onto the fingertip, toe, or ear and measures how much oxygen is in the blood.&nbsp;In many newborn nurseries, all babies have a pulse oximeter test before going home to make sure that their oxygen level is normal.</li> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/ekg.html/">electrocardiogram (EKG)</a>:</strong> a test that records the electrical activity of the heart</li> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/echo.html/">echocardiogram (echo)</a>:</strong> an ultrasound picture of the heart. It records the motion of the blood through the heart and can measure the direction and speed of blood flow.</li> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/xray-exam-chest.html/">chest X-ray</a></strong></li> <li><strong><a href="https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/cardiac-catheter.html/">cardiac catheterization</a>:</strong> a thin, flexible tube called a catheter is inserted into the heart, usually through a vein in the leg or arm, and provides information about the heart as well as blood pressure and blood oxygen levels. Sometimes, a device is inserted into the heart or blood vessels through the heart catheter.</li> </ul> <h3>How Is Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF) Treated?</h3> <p>Doctors repair tetralogy of Fallot through open-heart surgery soon after birth or later in infancy, depending on the baby's health and weight and severity of defects and symptoms.</p> <p>The two surgical options are:</p> <ol class="kh_longline_list"> <li><strong>Complete repair:</strong> The surgeon widens the passageway between the right ventricle and the pulmonary artery to improve blood flow to the lungs. The ventricular septal defect is patched to stop the mixing of high-oxygen blood with low-oxygen blood between the ventricles.<br /> <br /> These repairs also fix the two remaining defects (overriding aorta and right ventricular hypertrophy). Because the right ventricle doesn't have to work as hard to pump blood into the lungs, the thickness of the ventricle wall will decrease. And the patched VSD prevents blood with low oxygen from flowing into the aorta.</li> <li><strong>Temporary or palliative surgery:</strong> Minor repairs can improve blood flow to the lungs. This usually is done only when a baby is too weak or small to have full surgery. The surgeon creates a secondary route for blood to travel to the lungs for oxygen by placing a small tube (called a shunt) between a large artery branching off the aorta and the pulmonary artery.<br /> <br />The full repair is done later when the baby grows stronger.</li> </ol> <p>Most babies whose tetralogy of Fallot is repaired do very well, but will need regular follow-up visits with a heart specialist.</p>Tetralogía de FallotUna tetralogía de Fallot es una anomalía cardíaca congénita (es decir, con la que se nace). En la tetralogía de Fallot, cuatro anomalías cardíacas relacionadas modifican la forma en que la sangre circula hacia los pulmones y dentro del corazón.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/es/parents/tetralogy-of-fallot-esp.html/b6ccb505-f96f-4e0c-8e8b-6d22724b39df
Arrhythmia (Abnormal Heartbeat)An arrhythmia is an abnormal heartbeat usually caused by an electrical "short circuit" in the heart. Many are minor and not a health threat, but some can indicate a more serious problem.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/arrhythmias.html/19038a47-2ae4-48f8-8bd5-9e46150171b0
Atrial Septal DefectAtrial septal defect, or ASD, is a heart defect that some people are born with. Most ASDs are diagnosed and treated successfully with few or no complications.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/asd.html/109626e5-a3cb-4cba-a44d-947c86de3a81
Atrial Septal Defect (ASD)Atrial septal defect (ASD) — also known as a "hole in the heart" — is a type of congenital heart defect. Most ASDs are diagnosed and treated successfully.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/asd.html/2853e7be-1368-420f-bc8d-134350949604
Coarctation of the AortaWhen someone has coarctation of the aorta, that person's aorta (the major blood vessel that carries blood away from the heart to the body) is narrowed at some point.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/coa.html/85306f7f-1430-420d-9c1b-d7128470a85e
Congenital Heart DefectsHeart defects happen when there's a problem with a baby's heart development during pregnancy. Most heart defects can be treated during infancy.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/if-heart-defect.html/3dd23fa7-906f-4df9-8638-7400b77bed42
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Heart MurmursHeart murmurs are very common, and most are no cause for concern and won't affect a child's health.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/murmurs.html/9e6ab8dd-2a20-40ab-8625-3e956311e737
Heart and Circulatory SystemThe heart and circulatory system (also called the cardiovascular system) make up the network that delivers blood to the body's tissues.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/heart.html/fde8120a-c54e-4e57-94b8-fb4375c29487
Pulmonary StenosisPulmonary stenosis means the pulmonary valve is too small, narrow, or stiff. Many people have no symptoms, but kids with more severe cases will need surgery so that blood flows properly through the body.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/pulmonary-stenosis.html/17fd7fca-f801-4bae-a865-f8bfa1f73685
The HeartYour heart beats and sends oxygen throughout your entire body. Find out how it works and how heart problems can be fixed.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/kids/center/heart-center.html/d4cb468c-ba42-454a-94bf-4173f8e15a69
Ventricular Septal DefectVentricular septal defect, or VSD, is a heart condition that a few teens can have. Find out what it is, how it happens, and what doctors do to correct it.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/teens/vsd.html/840c44ec-78bd-4e55-ae74-37dcf68a1407
Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD)Ventricular septal defect (VSD) — also known as a "hole in the heart" — is a congenital heart defect. Most VSDs are diagnosed and treated successfully.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/vsd.html/21135699-6b44-43bd-96b1-618186631849
When Your Baby Has a Birth DefectIf your child has a birth defect, you don't have to go it alone - many people and resources are available to help you.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/baby-has-birth-defect.html/9c0573a4-68a2-4d7d-a868-26999e332361
Words to Know (Heart Glossary)Your heart beats and sends blood all around your body. Find out more about the heart, from A to Z, in this glossary.https://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/kids/heart-glossary.html/74e2184d-3790-4839-9d2f-9a0fc99c1279
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kh:age-allAgesOrAgeAgnostickh:clinicalDesignation-cardiologykh:genre-articlekh:primaryClinicalDesignation-cardiologyManaging Health Carehttps://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/cerebralpalsy-center/cp-healthcare/c3441eff-b2e9-402b-a9e4-caa7dd66cae4Heart & Blood Vesselshttps://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/medical/heart/e9ef0549-4392-4778-974d-753019ce4b8bHeart Conditionshttps://kidshealth.org/ws/RadyChildrens/en/parents/hearthealth/heartconditions/ba7116cf-3c46-4896-8429-8be5c439795ehttps://kidshealth.org/EN/images/illustrations/tetrologyFallot_433x259_enIL.png