Biomedical and psychosocial evaluation of "cured" adults with congenital heart disease

Congenit Heart Dis. 2007 Jan-Feb;2(1):44-54. doi: 10.1111/j.1747-0803.2007.00071.x.


As a result of significant advances in diagnostic, surgical, interventional, and pharmacological approaches, up to 95% of infants born with a congenital heart defect now survive into adulthood and there are at least 800,000 adult congenital heart disease patients living in the United States. Unfortunately, many of these individuals consider themselves "cured" or "fixed" and might have the misperception of a cure for a variety of reasons. The "cured" label is problematic and congenital heart disease is most accurately considered a chronic condition. This article outlines the concerns associated with the cured label. This is followed by the presentation of 4 illustrating case studies. Members of an adult congenital cardiology healthcare team must be prepared to address the full spectrum of concerns faced by patients who experience unexpected health deterioration. This spectrum includes both biomedical and psychosocial factors.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health
  • Cardiac Surgical Procedures / psychology*
  • Female
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / physiopathology*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / psychology*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / surgery
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Survivors / psychology*