Technology is Helping Parents Better Prepare for Heart Defects - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Technology is Helping Parents Better Prepare for Heart Defects in Children

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Kennedy King was born with a congenital heart defect that could have been deadly years ago.  Her parents, Christian and Tiffany found out about the heart defect when Tiffany was twenty weeks pregnant. 

A fetal echo-cardiogram picked up the that one of the chambers in Kennedy's heart was not working.  Since the Kings knew about the heart defect early they were able to prepare for birth at Duke Medical Center where Kennedy was born three months ago.  At just four days old Kennedy had her first of at least 3 heart surgeries.

Tiffany says, "I got to spend about thirty minutes with her before they took her back to the cardiac intensive care unit to start her on her medicines and then she was hooked up to wires and monitors keeping track of her."

Carilion Clinic Pediatric Cardiologist, Dr. William Gay treats Kennedy in Roanoke. 

Dr. Gay explains, "We have a number of infants like her that are growing up and doing well even young adults that are doing quite well with problems like hers.   Not everyone does as well, but when they get a good start like Kennedy that increases the chances greatly that things are going to be better in the years to come."

Kennedy will undergo another heart surgery before she turns 5 months old and then another surgery before she turns 2.

This is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness week.  It is fitting that it wraps up on Valentine's Day.

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