In cases involving single ventricles, predicting streaming characteristics is difficult. Unfavorable streaming can cause decreased oxygen saturation. Judging whether desaturation results from decreased pulmonary flow or unfavorable streaming is critical. A 20-day-old infant with a single left ventricle underwent ductus arteriosus ligation and pulmonary artery banding to control high pulmonary flow. Severe desaturation presented postoperatively, which worsened to 68% despite pure-oxygen ventilation. A bedside contrast echocardiogram helped determine whether unfavorable streaming caused desaturation. It revealed systemic venous streaming predominantly directed to the aorta. Emergent balloon atrial septostomy facilitated mixing at the atrial level. Oxygen saturation promptly increased to 85%.
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Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
All authors disclose no conflict of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and publication of this article.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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