Patent Ductus Arteriosus

  • Brynn Connor
  • Victoria Eng
  • Meghan C. Kusko
  • Kathryn Maselli


Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is a congenital heart defect where the ductus arteriosus maintains a shunt between the left pulmonary artery and the aorta. Clinical presentation and findings on cardiac auscultation vary depending on the size of the shunt. Classically, PDA presents with a continuous crescendo-decrescendo murmur described as “machinery-like”. To determine the degree of shunting through the PDA, Doppler echocardiography may be employed. Patients with a large PDA are at risk for persistent elevation in pulmonary vascular resistance thereby precipitating Eisenmenger’s syndrome. In this syndrome, shunting is ultimately reversed and patients experience subsequent cyanosis and/or pulmonary hypertension. The decision to treat a PDA should be based upon a combination of clinical signs and echocardiographic parameters. Treatment options include pharmacological closure in infants, catheterization, and surgical ligation.


Patent ductus arteriosus Auscultation Definition Diagnosis Eisenmenger’s Classification Treatment Prognosis 

Supplementary material

310603_1_En_26_MOESM1_ESM.mp4 (955 kb)
Video 26.1 PDA with a long diastolic component, which makes the murmur truly continuous (Provided by Robin Winkler Doroshow, MD, Medstar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC) (MP4 954 kb)
310603_1_En_26_MOESM2_ESM.mp4 (1.3 mb)
Video 26.2 PDA with a short diastolic component that is more typical (Provided by Robin Winkler Doroshow, MD, Medstar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC) (MP4 1354 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brynn Connor
    • 1
  • Victoria Eng
    • 1
  • Meghan C. Kusko
    • 1
  • Kathryn Maselli
    • 1
  1. 1.Georgetown University School of Medicine, Georgetown University HospitalWashingtonUSA

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