Septostomy: is a term describing several medical procedures. Most commonly it refers to a catheterization procedure done on the heart in very young children, often no more than a few days old, who are not getting adequate oxygenated blood supply to the body. It may also be called a balloon septostomy, and was developed in the 1960. Another form of this procedure is done in cases of twin-to-twin transfusion and is performed in utero.

atrial-fibrillation-wildpixelThe goal of septostomy is to increase communication between the right and left atrium. Doing this allows oxygenated blood to shunt to the atrium that will send blood to the body. It’s particularly useful in defects like transposition of the great arteries (TGA) where the great arteries (pulmonary valve and aorta) are attached to the wrong atria. Getting oxygenated blood to the right atrium is vital, since the right atrium is incorrectly attached to the aorta, which provides blood to the body. This shunting raises levels of oxygen in the right atrium by allowing blood between the atria to mix.

In almost all cases, septostomy is not a permanent fix for a situation where the heart’s defects create oxygen deprivation. It is what is known as a palliation or palliative, meant to bide a little time before true corrective surgery is performed. It’s not always applicable when treating different types of heart defects and might most be considered for those that cause cyanosis or insufficient ability to transport oxygen to the body.


BLALOCK TAUSSIG SHUNT (BT):is a surgical procedure to give palliation to cyanotic heart defects which are common causes of blue baby syndrome. In modern surgery, this procedure is temporarily used to direct blood flow to the lungs and relieve cyanosis while the infant is waiting for corrective or palliative surgery.

One branch of the subclavian artery or carotid artery is separated and connected with the pulmonary artery. The lung receives more blood with low oxygenation from the body. The first area of application was tetralogy of Fallot.


HEART HEART BD GLENN: Glenn shunt: A surgical operation for children born with cyanotic heart disease (”blue babies”), in which a large vein (the superior vena cava) is anastomosed (connected) to the right pulmonary artery so that blood bypasses the malformed right chambers of the heart and is shunted directly into the lungs to be oxygenated.

The operation was created by William W. L. Glenn (1914-2003), then chief of cardiovascular surgery at Yale University. Dr. Glenn invented an early artificial heart using pieces from a child’s Erector set, improved the c pacemaker and wrote a standard textbook, “Glenn’s Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.



As with any surgery, there are certain risks to atrial septostomy, including tearing of the cardiac tissue, arrythmias, and rarely, death.