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Open AccessCase Report

Natural History of Asymptomatic and Unrepaired Vascular Rings: Is Watchful Waiting a Viable Option? A New Case and Review of Previously Reported Cases

Department of Cardiology and Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, 9000 Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53226, USA
Academic Editor: Sari A. Acra
Children 2016, 3(4), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/children3040044
Received: 9 November 2016 / Revised: 13 December 2016 / Accepted: 15 December 2016 / Published: 21 December 2016
Vascular rings are a rare form of congenital heart disease in which abnormal aortic arch anatomy leads to encircling of the esophagus and/or trachea by the aortic vasculature. Symptoms can develop from this and prompt the need for surgery. A natural history study has been done on mildly symptomatic patients but no such study has been done on asymptomatic patients. We present a case report of three children with asymptomatic vascular rings who continue to receive follow-up without intervention and review all published cases of asymptomatic or unrepaired vascular rings. Clinical observation of asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic vascular rings, regardless of aortic arch anatomy, seems to be a safe approach. Children with mild symptoms almost invariably seem to have resolution of their symptoms by four years of age. View Full-Text
Keywords: vascular ring; right aortic arch; double aortic arch; asymptomatic; unrepaired; vascular anomaly vascular ring; right aortic arch; double aortic arch; asymptomatic; unrepaired; vascular anomaly
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Loomba, R.S. Natural History of Asymptomatic and Unrepaired Vascular Rings: Is Watchful Waiting a Viable Option? A New Case and Review of Previously Reported Cases. Children 2016, 3, 44.

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