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In a healthy heart, both coronary arteries arise from the aorta. In one type of heart defect, the left coronary artery comes off the pulmonary artery instead of the aorta. This condition is called anomalous left coronary artery from the pulmonary artery (ALCAPA). Similarly, it is possible for the right coronary artery to arise from the pulmonary artery instead of the aorta.
This is a type of congenital (present from birth) heart disease. Norton Children’s Heart Institute, affiliated with the UofL School of Medicine, surgeons are experienced in treating patients with ALCAPA. The surgery moves the origin of the left coronary artery from the pulmonary artery to the aorta, from which it should originate.
Following ALCAPA reimplantation surgery, most children have a good quality of life and can live without limitations on sports or other activities.
Patients with ALCAPA may show symptoms in infancy. Signs and symptoms may include:
Older patients may:
ALCAPA is a very serious form of congenital heart disease. Without prompt diagnosis and treatment, the heart can suffer damage from a lack of oxygen.
In infants, low energy, poor feeding/nursing and difficulty breathing may signal an issue with the heart, such as ALCAPA.
The following tests may provide more details to find the diagnosis:
This complex surgery requires experience, skill and training. The board-certified and fellowship-trained specialists at Norton Children’s Heart Institute are the leading providers of pediatric heart care in Louisville and Southern Indiana.
Our pediatric cardiothoracic team will review your child’s case and choose a reimplantation surgery strategy tailored to your child.
ALCAPA repair includes:
Norton Children’s Heart Institute has a network of remote diagnostic and treatment services in Kentucky and Southern Indiana.
Many kids will be able to stop taking medicines weeks or months after surgery. Some children will need to continue taking medicines after surgery, including:
Children with ALCAPA will need lifelong care from a cardiologist. Children born with ALCAPA are at an increased risk for heart rhythm issues later in life.