The following are terms that you may hear whilst your child is in hospital or at home receiving treatment.

There will always be some terms that are not covered so ask your cardiac team to explain things if they use terms that you do not understand.

Hypoplastic – Small or underdeveloped

Atrium – Collecting chamber of the heart

Ventricle – Pumping chamber of the heart

IVC – Inferior vena cava – lower body vein

SVC – Superior vena cava – upper body vein

Stenosed – Narrowed

Atretic – Not fully formed / closed

Patent – Open

Cyanosed / Cyanotic – Blue colour due to lack of oxygen

Acyanotic – Not looking blue

Oedema – Fluid retention, puffiness

Pyrexia – High temperature

Apyrexia – Normal temperature

ECG – Electrocardiogram (see section on Cardiac Tests)

Echo – Echocardiogram (see section on Cardiac Tests)

ASD (Atrial Septal Defect) – Hole between the top two collecting chambers

VSD (Ventricular Septal Defect) – Hole between the bottom two pumping chambers

Updated: November 2014

Review due: November 2016

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