What is patent ductus arteriosus (PDA)?

Updated: Nov 20, 2018
  • Author: Luke K Kim, MD; Chief Editor: Stuart Berger, MD  more...
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Answer

Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), in which there is a persistent communication between the descending thoracic aorta and the pulmonary artery that results from failure of normal physiologic closure of the fetal ductus (see image below), is one of the more common congenital heart defects.

Schematic diagram of a left-to-right shunt of bloo Schematic diagram of a left-to-right shunt of blood flow from the descending aorta via the patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) to the main pulmonary artery.

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