Introduction Low body weight and failure to thrive (FTT) often are considered limiting factors for open heart surgery. The purpose of our study is to asses the impact of FTT on ICU outcome of children undergoing Ventricular septal defect repair.
Methods A retrospective Study including all children less than 2 years who had VSD closure by open heart surgery during the period 2002–2010. Children were divided into 2 groups based on their weight for age using standard growth charts. Those with normal or mild failure to thrive (Z score > –3) are labeled as group A. group B included all children with severe failure to thrive (Z score ≤ –3). Both groups were compared in term of all operative and early post-operative outcome parameters.
Results 145 patients were included. 58 cases in group A and 87 patients in group B. The age and weight in group A was (8±5.16 months) and (6.31±1.75 kg) respectively. The age and weight in group B was (7.6±3.9 months) and (4.84±1.12) kg respectively. There were no significant differences between the 2 groups in term of post operative mortality or morbidity.
Conclusion Failure to thrive can complicate congenital heart diseases (CHD) associated with significant left to right shunt and heart failure. FTT was not associated with increase in ICU morbidity or mortality. Attempt to optimize the body weight for age in children with CHD may not add any beneficial advantages in term of surgical risk or postoperative ICU outcome.