The Impact of Delayed Cardiac Surgery on the Postnatal Growth of Children with Congenital Heart Disease in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The aim of this study was to evaluate preoperative and postoperative growth in children with congenital heart disease (CHD) when cardio-surgical treatment is delayed. Growth data were analysed on 116 children with various types of CHD [cyanotic lesions (Group 1), left to right shunt (Group 2) and obstructive lesions (Group 3)], who underwent cardiac surgery after a certain period of waiting. Preoperatively, during the time [median 1.13 (0.55-2.39)] years of waiting for surgery, their mean weight z-score decreased from -1.38 (±1.19) to -1.41 (±1.28), and their mean height z-score from -0.65 (±1.41) to -0.81 (±1.36). Children in Group 1 developed a significant linear growth deficit, in Group 2 weight was more affected than height, while in Group 3 both growth parameters were gradually slowly, but not significantly reduced. Postoperatively weight and height z scores, although they showed a linear trend of improvement for all three groups, remained significantly reduced for two years after surgery. At the time of the last examination at the age 9.11 (5.66-13.10) years, the mean height z score -0.16 (±1.28), was significantly reduced P<0.0001, than predicted height 0.23 (±0.82). Growth catch-up was related to age at surgery and preoperative growth deficit. Delayed cardiac surgery in children with CHD aggravated growth deficit and caused slow and incomplete postoperative growth catch-up.