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Heart Murmur in 7 month old

(16 Posts)
Ebb Mon 29-Dec-08 11:47:59

The GP diagnosed a heart murmur in DS and has refered us to The Bristols Childrens Hospital for a scan. Anyone had any experience of this? How do they scan? Is it like an ultra sound?

I'm not overly worried. At my initial 20wk scan it flagged a problem with the heart so I had to see the consultant but it was due to a new scanner and the baby being in the wrong position. The consultant said everything was fine so if the heart murmur was caused by anything serious, surely this would have shown on my scan?

I know heart murmurs are quite common and usually go on their own or cause little problems but any experiences would be welcome. Thank you.

believer07 Mon 29-Dec-08 12:35:11

I have no experience other than our auntie who had one from birth and died 4 years ago aged 86.

Yes you are right they ususally go on thier own.

Sort of a bump.

Saggarmakersbottomknocker Mon 29-Dec-08 12:37:23

Hello Ebb - sorry you have this to worry about.

The scan, an echocardiogram (ECHO) is an ultrasound of the heart except with colour and sound. They'll probably do an ECG too and maybe a chest x-ray. You are right in that many heart murmurs don't mean anything serious - sometimes there are odd noises from an otherwise structurally normal heart, also some children have murmurs which appear when they've been unwell and then take a few weeks to settle. Fingers crossed that this is the case for your ds. The anomaly scan you had when you were pg would show up most of the more serious heart conditions but won't necessarily flag a hole or an iffy valve. If ds has been otherwise well with no worries about feeding or weight gain then he'll probably be OK.

HTH. Good luck.

My dd2 has a heart murmur caused by mild pulmonary stenosis. Basically the valve that takes blood away from the heart in the pulmonary artery is narrower than it should be. This causes the blood to slosh about a bit before going through and that noise is the murmur. The GP first heard this at her 6 week check and we then saw the paediatrician at the hospital then a paed cardiologist. The scan - a cardiac echo - is just like an ultrasound - jelly and all and it is totally painless. She also had an ecg - which is just little sticky tapes being placed on her tummy and the heart activity being recorded. Pulmonary stenosis is one of the most common heart defects but there are others - around 1 in 100 children will be born with a heart defect of some sort. Many murmurs go, others are so insignificant as to never cause any problems. Dd2 is symptom free and unlikely to ever need treatment except for antibiotics with dental work or stitches - the murmur just slightly increases the risk of an infection in that case. You are right - serious defects would show up on the antenatal scan. I would say 'try not to worry' but in your shoes I found that impossible. Dd2 was well but the whole thing terrified me. She is nearly 8 and I think I've just about let go of the fear now - but it took me years. I hope you get good news soon.

Saggarmakersbottomknocker Mon 29-Dec-08 12:48:40

NorthernLurker - they've recently changed the guidelines about the dental stuff. Most patients won't get the anti-bs now. I find it a bit of a worry TBH.

Sorry for hijack Ebb.

Ebb Mon 29-Dec-08 12:58:22

Thanks everyone. The GP first picked it up a couple of weeks ago when DS was poorly and told me to come back in a couple of weeks (today) to see if it was still there. It may still be due to his cough although that's gone now. He's not a great feeder ( of solids, bf's well though ) and his weight gain has slowed a lot in the last few weeks but I'd put that down to teething / growth spurts / being under the weather. He's dropped from 75th to 50th. Haven't had him weighed for a while. He's got good chunky thighs so not overly concerned about his weight. I'm trying to tell myself not to worry until there is something to worry about but it's not so easy when you're a Mum is it? smile

Clarissimo Mon 29-Dec-08 13:00:34

DS4 had one, wasrushed into SCBU aged a day (after lovely home birth) but had a scan 6 weeks ago or so 9he's 9 months soon) and it was clear; was an ECG but Paed did say they don't do this on everyone, bas had alert signs such as poor weight gain.

It really was just to check and we were told that in the vast majority of cases it mens nothing

Saggar - I didn't know that - dd2 was last seen last year and isn't due for review again for 4 years (hurrah). In her case the cardiologist said an infection was very, very unlikely but I would still rather be safe. Their hearts don't need anymore trauma do they? Considering how sporadic antibiotic use would be in most children I find it strange that they can have eliminated the possibility of a risk - iyswim? That is a bit of a worry.

stroppyknickers Mon 29-Dec-08 13:04:47

my ds has one, he is fine and gets seen every year or so. Still there - it's a vcd/vsd? See - so not worried I can't remember exactly what type it is. grin hope you get a similar result.

Ooh sorry EBB - that weight gain sounds fine to me - I think that they only worry when a baby really isn't thriving - chunky thinghs sounds bang on! smile

Try not to worry - but I know, I do know, how hard that is. I think I finally let go of the worry a bit when dd2 was 4 and took part in some medical exams as a test patient. 6 doctors examined her (going from registrar to consultant level) They weren't allowed to use an echo and had to diagnose her. 1 got it bang on. 1 suggested her diagnosis but actually thought it was something else and the other four were way out! I just thought - well this shows how healthy she is - she's foxing them!

Hope it all goes well- the echocardiogram is very good at finding any major structural problem. Like others have said murmurs are really quite common and usually cause no problems. I've had one all my life, known as an "innocent heart murmur" as it doesn't affect me at all. It has been thoroughly investigated a couple of times, partly because I SCUBA dive but also to check it hasn't changed in any way. Hopefully your DS's will be the same- but know how worrying it can be. Good luck xx

PS. Yes I used to be told I needed ABs after dental treatment but that has changed so don't any more. I understand there is good evidence behind this change in policy so trying not to worry about it!

Ebb Mon 29-Dec-08 13:33:05

Thanks all. DS is a happy, active little chap and I've certainly had no worries. It's very useful to know exactly what they do though. Will just wait for the appointment now and go from there.

surprisenumber3 Tue 30-Dec-08 00:17:14

hi - my DS2 has an innocent heart murmur. He's 4 and not even followed up for it, and as it's innocent, no antibiotics are needed for dental treatment. They even told me not to bother telling his school!

He was referred to Children's Hospital and saw the Cardiologist and he had an ECG and an echo but the Consultant said he was sure it was nothing and might stay with him forever or might disappear as he gets older.

DoubleBluff Tue 30-Dec-08 08:55:09

DS1 has a a heart murmur, picked up n his 18 month check, and has never been followed up or been an issue. I forget he has it until I see threads like this!
PS - he is a fab rugby player so it dosn't stop him from doing anything!

Kiansmummy Thu 08-Jan-09 10:18:27

Hi I have just gone through 3 months of intense yet unneccasary worry over this basically during a routine gp appoiment when my son was 12 months old, his gp said he heard a heart murmur but not to worry and just get him checked in a few weeks with a more senior gp- this we did, my son was then referred to a consultant who seemed very concerned and immediatley referred us to a heart specialist ( though this appointment took 5 weeks to come through)- the heart specialist did a ecg test and a heart scan and told us that my son had a innocent heart murmur which almost half of all kids have at some point in their lives and was completely fine.
Please dont worry too much as over 65% of all heart murmurs are innocent and those that arent can usually be treated with medication or minor surgery.

A heart murmur which means a extra noise heard within the heart is suprisingly common and the majority of kids grow out of them I am sure your little one will be fine- most professionals air on the side of caution when small children are concerned. smile

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