ABC Medical Center > Patent ductus arteriosus

What is Patent ductus arteriosus?

21:56 - 4 May , 2021


It is a congenital heart disease in which the natural duct between two of the main heart arteries, the aorta and the pulmonary artery, does not close after three or four years after birth. It is an opening that, during the baby’s development in the womb, serves to receive oxygenated blood from the mother.

As with congenital heart disease, the origin of this condition is unknown, but it is believed that heredity and the environment may play a direct role.

When the patent ductus arteriosus is not very wide, it does not usually cause complications even without treatment, but when its size is larger, it must be treated promptly because it can trigger serious health problems such as heart failure, pulmonary hypertension, and infections such as endocarditis, due to the fluid of low-oxygenated blood that travels in the wrong direction.

Signs and symptoms Patent ductus arteriosus

They depend on the size of the duct and whether the baby is premature, since in those cases, the defect is usually more serious and difficult to repair. 

When we are talking about a small duct, there are generally no symptoms, and sometimes it is detected until adulthood, but if it is of a high degree, heart failure occurs quickly in the baby, manifesting the following symptoms: 

  • Breathing problems such as shortness of breath or excessively fast rhythm.
  • Accelerated heart rate.
  • Weakness and fatigue.
  • Lack of appetite that prevents normal development.
  • Excessive sweating when eating food or when crying.

Diagnosis and treatment Patent ductus arteriosus

Your doctor or your child’s doctor can identify this condition through physical examination by listening to a heart murmur, requesting complementary studies to confirm the diagnosis such as electrocardiograms, X-rays, cardiac ultrasound, and catheterization. 

Available treatments can be used according to the severity of the defect, age, and health status of the patient, but, in general, medications are used to control symptoms and repair through surgery or cardiac catheterization.

Our Pediatric Heart Center is the only private center in Mexico to treat heart conditions with an exclusive unit for pediatric surgeries.

We have a group of highly trained specialists made up of pediatric cardiologists, echocardiographers, interventional cardiologists, electrophysiologists, pediatric cardiovascular surgeons, pediatric cardiovascular anesthesiologists, pediatric specialists in cardiovascular intensive care, nurses, medical assistants, perfusionists, psychologists, and social workers.


  • Cardiovascular surgery
  • Interventional cardiology
  • Pediatric echocardiography
  • Fetal echocardiography
  • Pediatric electrophysiology
  • Fetal electrophysiology
  • Cardiovascular intensive care unit
  • Pediatric cardiology clinic
  • Univentricular Heart Program


  • cardiopatiascongenitas.net
  • mayoclinic.org
  • medlineplus.gov
  • texasheart.org
  • kidshealth.otg
  • msdmanuals.com
  • medigraphic.com
  • Márquez-González H, Castro-Contreras U, Cerrud-Sánchez CE, et al. Experiencia en el tratamiento de cierre de conducto arterioso persistente. Rev Med Inst Mex Seguro Soc. 2016;54(Suppl: 3):291-295.
  • Arellano-Ostoa D, Pérez-Lorenzana H, Santiago-Romo JE, et al. Experiencia en el manejo del cierre del conducto arterioso persistente por toracoscopía. Rev Mex Cir Pediatr. 2014;18(1):33-39.
  • Hernando BG, Bernárdez ZI, Iglesias LJ, et al. Pautas de atención médica a niños con conducto arterioso, menores de 30 semanas de gestación. Rev Mex Pediatr. 2013;80(4):131-135.
  • Valdés MA, Sixto FS. Conducto arterioso persistente en el adulto. A propósito de un caso. CorSalud. 2011;3(2):112-116.

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