Anomalous origin of the left coronary artery from the pulmonary artery (ALCAPA) is a rare congenital heart defect. It is typically diagnosed at a few months of age. The infant presents with cardiac failure secondary to left ventricular dysfunction from the coronary steal that develops as pulmonary vascular resistance (PVR) falls. With the diagnosis made, surgical repair is typically performed expeditiously in order to try and restore left ventricular perfusion and stop the ongoing coronary steal. We present an unusual case of a preterm infant undergoing a routine echocardiogram, who was incidentally found to have an ALCAPA. Management strategies between neonatology and cardiology may differ in this setting. In this case, elevated PVR helps to preserve myocardial perfusion prior to surgical repair. Therefore, common neonatal management strategies typically utilized for respiratory distress, elevated PVR, and cardiac dysfunction may have potential for detrimental effects on myocardial perfusion in this specific lesion. This case also emphasizes the importance of identifying the coronary origins as a routine part of a complete pediatric echocardiogram. It also presents a rarely encountered problem: when to repair an ALCAPA in an as yet asymptomatic patient. We believe this to be the youngest and smallest patient reported with the diagnosis and successful surgical correction of an ALCAPA.
- Anomalous Left Coronary Artery from the Pulmonary Artery
- Myocardial Steal
- Pulmonary Vascular Resistance
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine