Balloon Dilation of Aortic Valve for HLHS
A fetus with hypoplastic left heart syndrome with critical aortic stenosis may be a good candidate for balloon dilation of the aortic valve. The fetal heart is accessed in utero via a specialized needle, and a wire and balloon are placed across the aortic valve. The balloon is gently inflated to broaden the opening of the aortic valve. Opening of this valve may improve flow into and out of the left ventricle and allow it to keep growing during pregnancy.
Texas Children’s Fetal Center’s goal in performing this procedure is to intervene early enough to allow these children to have two functioning ventricles and improve their overall survival.
The Fetal Center is the first center in the southwestern United States to successfully develop a fetal cardiac intervention program. Our multi-disciplinary team of experts in Maternal Fetal Medicine, Fetal Cardiology Pediatric Cardiac Intervention and Maternal/Fetal Anesthesia has completed in utero fetal cardiac interventions that addressed problems related to severe fetal left heart obstruction in fetuses with critical aortic valve stenosis or HLHS.