A baby girl from Mongolia has come to Denver for surgery to repair a hole in her heart. It’s a birth defect called a ventricular septal defect. Doctors say if it’s left untreated, 10-month-old Sarana will likely die in her teens or 20s. The charity, Samaritan’s Purse, and Rocky Mountain Hospital for Children (RMHC) agreed to help. Dr. Michael Pettersen, MEDNAX-affiliated pediatric cardiologist at RMHC, focused on the lower pumping chambers during an ultrasound. “There’s a large hole between those two ventricles,” Pettersen explained. Sarana’s hole in her heart allows too much blood flow to the lungs at very high pressure. “Eventually this causes irreversible damage to the lung arteries,” said Pettersen.
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