Indexed on: 21 Feb '09Published on: 21 Feb '09Published in: Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology
Congenital heart disease (CHD) is the most prevalent group of congenital anomalies. There is considerable variation in the reported epidemiology of CHD, mainly attributable to methodological differences. Using register-based data, the current study describes the epidemiology of CHD in a geographically well-defined population of the North of England during 1985-2003. The total prevalence of CHD was 85.9 per 10 000 births and terminations of pregnancy for fetal anomaly. Livebirth prevalence was 79.7 per 10 000 livebirths. Both total and livebirth prevalence increased during the study period. Ninety-two per cent of affected pregnancies resulted in a livebirth, 5% were terminated, 2% resulted in a stillbirth, and 1% in a late miscarriage. Almost a quarter (23%) of cases had one or more coincident anomalies of other organs, with chromosomal abnormalities the most frequent group. A total of 89.2% of cases survived to 1 year and the survival improved during the study period. This population-based study has demonstrated an increasing trend in both prevalence and survival among children with CHD.