MATSUE, SHIMANE PREF. – A team at Shimane University Hospital has successfully performed arterial switch operations on the heart of a 2-month-old baby who was suffering from a serious congenital heart disease, the state-run institution said on Wednesday.
The prognosis for the baby, whose condition had left his main arterial blood valve and pulmonary artery reversed, is good. He is expected to leave the hospital by the weekend.
The boy weighed only about 1.7 kg at the time of surgery, making him the lightest infant ever to receive such an operation in Japan, the hospital said.
Heart surgeon Yoshifumi Fujimoto said the boy weighed just 1,168 grams at birth.
Because the baby’s heart was smaller than a pingpong ball, the surgeons faced a very delicate operation, Fujimoto said
The baby was born on Dec. 30, 2013, to a couple in Matsue, Shimane Prefecture.
He was found to have suffered from the complete transposition of the primary arteries in his heart. His main arterial valve was linked with his right cardiac chamber rather than the left and his pulmonary artery with the left chamber rather than the right, the hospital said.
The university’s team conducted the arterial switch operations on March 3.
Since the operation, the baby has grown to a weight of 2,690 grams, the hospital said.