Unilateral absence of the pulmonary artery (UAPA) is a heart defect that is present from birth. The pulmonary artery takes blood from the heart to the lungs. In the absence of a pulmonary artery, other blood vessels compensate by supplying blood to the lungs. Pressure can build inside these vessels and lead to heart and lung complications. UAPA can be left sided or right sided. It most often occurs alone, but can occur with other heart anomalies and birth defects. Signs and symptoms include repeat lung infections, lower exercise tolerance, shortness of breath, chest pain, and fluid in the lungs. Risk for these symptoms increase with age. Complications of UAPA include, hemoptysis (coughing up blood), respiratory hemorrhage, and high blood pressure in the arteries to the lung (pulmonary hypertension). Serious complications may be triggered by stress on the body, such as pregnancy and altitude sickness.
Questions sent to GARD may be posted here if the information could be helpful to others. We remove all identifying information when posting a question to protect your privacy. If you do not want your question posted, please let us know. Submit a new question
My son was born with a heart defect. His right pulmonary artery isn't connected to his heart. His doctors want to do a surgery to reconnect it. Is this a very risky surgery? I can't find any information about this online. The doctors are telling me this isn't as bad as it could be, but I still am nervous. See answer