The day we learnt our boy had a hole in the heart……

The Discovery….

My boy was born with average size, with mild jaundice, but not so serious as to require extended stay in the hospital.  He had a loud cry that could shake the whole neighbourhood. 

We brought him for his one month checkup at the polyclinic.  The doctor in the polyclinic detected a heart murmur and immediately referred us to a specialist in KKH.  My husband and I were surprised with this discovery, as the pediatrician did not mention anything about the murmur.  The polyclinic doctor assured us that it was normal for babies to have heart murmur, and my boy’s condition might not be bad afterall.  Nevertheless, we had questions in our head and kept asking ourselves questions like how could this arise, what could the heart murmur be and so on.

On the day of the appointment with the cardiologist in KKH, my boy had to go for a scan.  During the scan, the doctor briefed us on how a normal heart would function and how blood would flow in a normal heart.  Then, he showed us, through the scan, how the blood flowed in my boy’s heart.  It was concluded that my boy had Atrial Septal Defect (ASD).  Based on the definition obtained from Wikipedia (, it is a form of congenital heart defect that enables blood flow between the left and right atria via the interatrial septum. To put it in laymen’s term, a heart is being divided into four quadrants.  My boy had a hole in the upper quadant which resulted in blood flowing from one quadrant to the other quadrant of the upper part of the heart.  The hole is considered large if it is 9 mm in size, and if left untreated, will result in an enlargement of the heart, and eventually, heart failure.  The hole in my boy’s heart was 8 mm in size.  Even though his hole was classified as "medium", my husband and I just couldn’t bring ourselves to accept this fact.  The doctor advised us to observe our boy’s condition, and made sure that he didn’t show any signs of breathlessness.  He would have to undergo an operation to close the heart when he reached 15 kg in weight if the hole hadn’t closed by then.

The Road Ahead….

The days following our boys’ diagnosis were filled with searches on the internet on the causes of ASD and the various treatments available.  I was also a member of another forum site, and talked to other members on their children’s conditions.  It was through that forum that I realised my boy’s condition wasn’t the worst.  In a way, we were glad that the hole was at the upper chamber rather than the lower chamber.  Some children had multiple holes, and other complications.  Together with these parents, we all prayed hard for our children’s recovery.

Although my boy didn’t present any signs of breathlessness, he developed Allergic Rhinitis, and was also admitted to hospital for bronchitis.  My husband and I were very worried whenever he coughed for prolonged period.  My boy practically didn’t put on much weight before he turned 3.  Nevertheless, we were consoled when we heard that the hole did not grow bigger.

The Recovery….

Shortly after our boy turned 3, our family had to stay overseas for 6 months.  Before we left Singapore, my husband and I brought our boy for another checkup.  We were greeted with good news that the hole had become smaller to 5 mm.  As my boy was below 15 kg then, the doctor suggested he could perhaps could for an operation to close the hole 6 months later after we returned to Singapore.  Both my husband and I had sort of convinced ourselves that the operation was inevitable.  Six months later, after we returned to Singapore, we brought our boy for a checkup, and was pleasantly surprised when the doctor told us that the hole had already closed!  My boy was officially discharged!  Words simply couldn’t describe how we felt then, even though the boy didn’t know what the happiness and tears were all about.

So, parents out there, don’t despair.  If your child has ASD or VSD (Ventricle Septal Defect), it’s not the end of the world.  There is always a possibility that the hole will close on its own without any external intervention.  The most important thing is to treat your child like any other normal kid.  They are not different from other kids, anyway.

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VSD hole 9MM


My daughter is 40 days old and she has VSD of 9 MM.(doctor told us 10 days back).

I was going through many forums and found that VSDs are common in infants if they are size of around 3-5MM.But our doctor told us that his medicine will fill hole in 6 months and there is no need to worry.

Can you please advice that is it better to go with doctor medicine or we should go for surgery.





Thank You God!!!

Thanks for sharing your experience.  My family went through a similar situation.  My son was also born with an ASD which was not diagnosed right at birth.  But was later found during a checkup when he was three years old.  He had multiple holes (3).  The sizes were 2, 5, and 7mm if I remember correctly.  As a baby he was unable to drink more than two ozs of milk from the bottle without getting out of breath.  As a toddler he wasn’t able to play like other kids without feeling tired and weak. At night sometimes his heart would slow down so much that it would momentarily stop beating.  All we could do was just pray to God that He would heal our child.  And that our child would not have to suffer like this but lead a normal healthy life.  In November 2011 we went to a routine annual checkup with his Cardiologist.  The Dr. did an Echo and was unable to find any of the holes.  All the holes had closed up and no more arrythmias and no surgery was required anymore.  Thank you God for this miracle.

Thanks for sharing..   My

Thanks for sharing..


My girl has ASD too.. hers is 8mm… It was detected during her one month checkup. The hole grew as she grew bigger during the 1 yr old checkup..


i am still hoping that the hole will close and she does not have to undergo any operation.

And it is really very consoling to hear that your boy’s hole in heart has closed up.


Thanks for sharing. u are a

Thanks for sharing. u are a strong mommy 🙂

Thank you for sharing!

Thank you for sharing! I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been. You are a strong Mummy! I’m happy to hear that the hold has closed. You have a very special child!

Thank You, Augmum!

Thank you very much, Augmum! 

As parents, we worry most is

As parents, we worry most is our childrens’ health rather than our childrens’ studies. To me, with good health,  all others are secondary.

qms, happy for u that everything is fine now with your son. 🙂 🙂

Dear happy to be mum

Dear happy to be mum,

Thank you for sharing your story, too.  Glad that everything has turned out well for you and your boy. 

Dear Kash313

Dear Kash313,

I pray for the early recovery of your girl!  She will be fine! 

Thank you Chenonceau!

Thank you, Chenonceau!

hi qms i have an almost

hi qms

i have an almost similiar situation with you for my elder boy but his hole was detected shortly after birth by his pediatrician as he was hospitalised for jaundice for almost a week.  it was a middle hole too & it was really a blow to me as we were overseas with not much help & support and being a first time mother, it did not help at all with the news of his hole in his heart. i had post natal blues, worrying about his hole and the costs involved staying in the hospital.

but luckily for my boy, his hole close to almost a rice grain by the time he was one year old and when he was almost three, his hole has closed completely 🙂 

guess as a parents, it is really tough for us to handle if our kids are not well…that is why i when we know of kids who are ill or suffer from serious health conditions, like cancer, etc…we will feel for the parents and the kids immediately..and will also remind ourselves to be thankful and grateful for what we have, thanks for sharing this as it make me pause and think and count my blessings once again. (which i have forgotten at times 😉

Hi, I can understand how u

I can understand how u must hav felt bcoz I m going through the same thing now. My daughter now 21 mths old had Kawasaki disease last June and it was during that we discovered she has a 6 mm hole in her heart. I can’t explain how I felt when I got this news. Last scan done in November showed her hole is same size but she does not have any other complications so the next scan is scheduled in November again. I just hope the hole will close on it’s own.
Thanks lady your story has really given me hope.

I am happy for you too!!

I am happy for you too!!

Thank you, Janet_lee88!

Dear janet_lee88,

Thank you!  Yes, we shouldn’t be hoping for a specific gender of baby, but healthy baby! 

Take care

I am happy the hole in the heart has closed…it must have been such a relief and great happiness that your son is officially discharged. As parents, we shouldn’t wish for a girl or boy but for healthy kids. Cheers ! 

To amylqf, smum, Trell & Trihok

To amylqf, smum, Trell & Trihok,

Thank you very much!  Yes, we as parents don’t ask much of our kids.  Just wish that they are always healthy and happy. 

Congrate on ur gooood news :D

A big congrats to u and ur family…we as a parent dun ask for much..jus praying hard for their good health  

THanks for sharing ur story to us.

Thank God!!!

Dear qms,

I’m so happy that no surgical intervention is required. Thank God!! 

It must be difficult for

It must be difficult for the family initially. But so glad that everything work out just fine. Congratulations.

tks for sharing. great to

tks for sharing. great to hear that.

To soursop, schweppes and ksme

Thank you very much for all your kind words! 

Thank you for sharing qms.

Thank you for sharing qms. I am glad it was a good ending with self recovery instead of operation.

Thanks for sharing

Thanks for sharing, qms. Can imagine the anxiety and fear u had to go thru. But a mother’s love and resilience knows no boundary.

So happy that all is well with your ds. Kudos to u. 

Dear qms, Wow! What can I

Dear qms,

Wow! What can I say? Congratulations and thanks for sharing your story.  I think I would have broken down completely if I had a situation like this.  You’re really strong and I’m sure your son will grow up like you one day! Cheers!

Thank You, Happy Mama!

Hi Happy Mama!

When it comes to our own child, I believe we will all stand up to them.  Thank You for reading the article!


Thank You, foreverj!

Hi foreverj!

Thank you for taking the time to read the article!


Thank You, Duriz!

Hi Duriz!

How are you and little cutie getting on?  Are you enjoying yourselves?  Your little cutie must be very glad to have mummy around everyday now.

Thank you for taking the time to read the article and your words of encouragement. 


My Heart Goes Out To You

My heart goes out to you for all the pain, trauma and suffering you went through when you discovered your son’s medical condition. But your patience and belief in him paid off and your dear son has now fully recovered!

What can I say… but a very big CONGRATULATIONS to you!!

it is never easy for the

it is never easy for the parents when their child is not well. thank you for sharing your words of encouragement as i’m sure they bring hope to other parents of children who r suffering too…

Dear qms, Kudos to you,

Dear qms,

Kudos to you, strong mummy and to your DS, wonderful boy who is determined to grow up strong like his mummy



Hi Mimama!

Hi Mimama!

Perhaps you would like to see a pediatric cardiologist?  I would, just to be sure of my child’s condition.  This is particularly important if you plan to buy any insurance policy for your child.

All the best to you!  I pray hard that your son turns out fine!


Thank you, Autumnbronze!

Hi Autumnbronze!

Thank you very much!  

Thanks for sharing, JWMommy!

Hi JWMommy!

Thanks for sharing!  Yes, it’s a good thing that we are able to pull through this episode.  It is also good to know that we are not alone in this journey.  I am glad my article has managed to strike a chord with some readers here. 


Dear mambobb,

Dear mambobb,

Yes, there is always hope.  My boy has grown up to be tall and big now.  So, all is not lost.

Perhaps you would like to see a pediatric cardiologist just to set your mind at ease?  Hope to hear good news from you!


Dear qms, After reading your

Dear qms,

After reading your article, I am not sure if I should raise any concern for my DS. During DS’s 2nd month visit to the pedi, he informed me that he could hear mild heart murmur. He said that it was ok as DS was growing well. In fact, he was growing at a faster rate than other babies in terms of weight. The situation remain the same at 3rd month visit. Pedi says that this could be quite common and sometimes the hole will eventually closed when they grow bigger.

I am not sure if I should do anything other than letting the pedi monitor. DS is 4 months now.

Hi there

Hi qms,

Thanks for sharing.

I am so happy to read that your DS’s condition managed to self-heal


Hole in the Heart

Hi qms

I have been through that too. But I am slightly luckier as during my pregnancy after the detailed scan, I was informed that my boy will be born with ASD with hole size of about 8mm and was recommended a good heart specialist. Coincidentally, my pedi was on leave when my boy was born and this specialist took over. Immediately after he listened to his heart, he told us that he is having heart problem and required detailed heart scan. He did not suggest for operation as my boy is so small and mentioned that this is a very common problem in Singapore and the hole will close by the time he reaches 5 years old. For my boy first two year, we needed to bring him for a scan every half year to monitor that the hole is closing. Thus, by the time, my boy reaches 4, his hole has closed up. I feel that I am lucky that we are able to pull through this episode without big problem.

Thanks for the

Thanks for the article.

When my boy had the cough for 2 months and the PD had heard a murmur sound from his heart and told us that there might b a hole in his heart. My heart sank straight away. He was only 6mths. PD told us to monitor him and will check on him again.

The next visit, PD said the sound is softer, might not be ASD. Thank God for that. I don’t think I will stay strong like you if the news is bad. Anyway, you give me a HOPE that even though there is a hole, our kid will stay strong and will recover by themselves. 

Thank You, ksi!

Thanks, ksi!  

Dear qms You are a strong

Dear qms

You are a strong mummy!!  Kudos.


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