The defect can be closed by a device (see Device Closure for PDA) or surgical ligation depending on the size of the defect and the presence of pulmonary hypertension. Even after the defect is closed, the patient may need regular follow-up with a cardiologist.
The ductus arteriosus is present in all fetuses allowing blood to bypass the non-functioning lungs. At birth or shortly after birth as the baby starts to breathe, the ductus arteriosus would normally close permanently. Failure to do so results in patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) which is an open channel allowing blood to flow from the aorta (blood vessel carrying blood from the heart to the rest of the body) to the pulmonary artery (blood vessel supplying the lung). If the PDA is large, the heart will be volume-loaded resulting in
heart failure. The PDA also carries a risk of bacterial infection (infective endarteritis). PDA can be closed by inserting a device through the blood vessels in the groin (percutaneous transcatheter approach).