CHD: The World’s Most Common Birth Defect

Globally, deaths from congenital heart disease (the world’s most common birth defect) have declined 34.5% since 1990. But better diagnosis and treatments driving the improvement aren’t evenly accessible. 

The first comprehensive study of CHD, published late last month, found that child mortality rates were significantly lower in countries with higher sociodemographic indexes. That’s because children with CHD from lower-income countries often lack access to lifesaving surgeries or early diagnosis.

“In high income countries like the United States, we diagnose some heart conditions prenatally during the 20-week ultrasound,” says contributor Gerard Martin. 

Today marks the end of Congenital Heart Disease Awareness Week (Feb 7-14). 

Children’s National Hospital

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