What We Do

We work to correct a defect in the heart that's often present even before birth. In an unborn baby's heart, there's a small blood vessel called the ductus arteriosus, located between the aorta and the pulmonary artery. This is a normal part of blood flow before birth. After a baby is born and begins to breathe, the ductus arteriosus usually closes on its own, but sometimes it stays open. This is called a Patent Ductus Arteriosus, or a PDA.

Your PDA will be closed during a procedure called a heart catheterization.​

 Materials and Resources to Help You

The Patient & Family Education Program at UHN offers valuable resources to help you understand your condition.

Resources from the Patient & Family Education Program

Visit our Health Information section to find dedicated resources to help you understand your condition. Find the information you're looking for.​

 Your Procedure

Your doctor will need to order several tests for you. These may include an echocardiogram (ECG), x-raysCT Scan and some blood work.

The Nurse Coordinator will contact you regarding your procedure appointment.

How to Prepare

Please bring with you a list of your current medications. This includes prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, vitamin or mineral supplements and herbal remedies.

If you take a "blood thinner" (e.g. Coumadin or Warfarin), you will receive instructions regarding what to do when the procedure date is booked.

A friend or family member is required to be present in the lab during the procedure. You will be sedated during this procedure. The friend or family member will be instructed on how to care for you after the procedure and be required to drive and/or accompany you home. They can also help you gather information, take notes and ask questions.

Checking In

Your procedure will be done in the Cardiovascular Investigations Unit but you will be admitted to the Cardiac Short Stay Unit on the 5th Floor Munk Building on the morning of your procedure.

When you arrive at the Cardiac Short Stay Unit, check in at the reception desk. Please have the following ready:

  • Health card (OHIP card). If you do not have an OHIP card, please bring another form of government-issued photo ID (such as a driver's license, passport, or other provincial health card). Please arrive 15 minutes before your appointment.
  • Your name, address and birth date

Your procedure will be done shortly after you arrive. Your doctor will see you at that time.

Before the PDA Closure

When you check-in, the receptionist will give you a name band to wear. You will be assigned a room to wait and asked to change into a hospital gown. Your family should keep your valuables with them.

A nurse will prepare you for the procedure by reviewing a checklist, starting an IV and confirming your medications.

When it's time for your procedure an attendant will take you down to the Cardiovascular Investigations Unit.

During and After the PDA Closure

Under local anesthesia, a tube will be placed in a vein near your groin, and the doctor will move the tube up the vein into your heart. This tube is used to place a small piece of equipment called a "plug" in your PDA. The plug blocks the blood from flowing through the PDA.

After the PDA closure, you'll lie flat for about 2 hours. While you're still in the hospital, your nurse will ask you to walk around. Once you're able to walk, you'll be ready to go home. You may have a bruise in your groin near the spot that was used for your procedure.

You may also have some pain when it's all over. Please let your nurse know as there is medication available to help with your pain.

Follow-up after Discharge

You will have a follow-up visit 8 - 12 weeks after your procedure and have a CT Scan of your aorta. The Adult Congenital Cardiac Clinic will schedule follow-up appointments within 2-3 months and inform you of the appointment time by mail.

For more information, please contact

Miguela Ragell, Booking Secretary
Phone:416 340 4393
Fax: 416 340 4127

You will come back to our hospital in 8 to 12 months for an angiogram.

How Long Will Your Procedure Take?

The procedure usually takes from 90 minutes to 2 hours.

We do everything that we can to stay on time. Unfortunately, your procedure may be delayed by unforeseen circumstances. We recommend that you come prepared for delays.​

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