What Are the Long-term Effects of Ventricular Septal Defects?
If left untreated, the long-term outlook for very small VSDs is good, though there is always the risk of infection (endocarditis) which may lead to complications. For larger VSDs, the enlargement of the heart may lead to problems with heart function or rhythm abnormalities. With very large VSDs, Eisenmenger syndrome may develop which results in a shortened lifespan and limitations in exercise and lifestyle.
The long-term outlook for VSDs closed in childhood is good, but long-term follow up may be needed. Prophylaxis for bacterial endocarditis may still be needed unless no residual shunts are present. Your pediatric cardiologist should be able to let you know if this is necessary.