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The ductus arteriosus is a blood vessel that connects the aorta and pulmonary arteries. It’s a vital part of a baby's circulation within the heart before they're born.
In most cases, the blood vessel closes shortly after birth. If it stays open, it’s called a PDA.
This duct causes extra blood flow into the lungs and the left side of the heart.
We see PDAs in premature infants.
In these babies, the extra blood to flow to the lungs can cause problems with breathing. Sometimes we need to put them on a breathing machine.
At the Heart Cath Lab at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, we have vast experience successfully closing PDAs in tiny infants. We often work with doctors in our NICU and those of nearby hospitals.
PDAs can also occur in older infants and children.
In this group, issues from this open duct often start when they're much older — like in their 20s or 30s. We can see changes in the left side of the heart and lungs.
To refer a patient, doctors can:
We can successfully close most PDAs with a heart cath and avoid the need for open-heart surgery.
We're not able to close all PSDs in the cath lab. The doctor will review your child's echocardiogram to decide if it's the right treatment option.
During your child's heart cath, the doctor will:
After this procedure, your child can often go home the same day after they recover. But we advise most people to plan to stay overnight so we can observe their child.
Children's Hospital's main campus is located in the Lawrenceville neighborhood. Our main hospital address is:
UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
One Children’s Hospital Way
4401 Penn Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
In addition to the main hospital, Children's has many convenient locations in other neighborhoods throughout the greater Pittsburgh region.
With myCHP, you can request appointments, review test results, and more.
For questions about a hospital bill call:
To pay your bill online, please visit UPMC's online bill payment system.
Interested in giving to Children's Hospital? Support the hospital by making a donation online, joining our Heroes in Healing monthly donor program, or visiting our site to learn about the other ways you can give back.