Critical Congenital Heart Disease (CCHD)



Critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) represents a group of heart defects that cause serious, life-threatening symptoms requiring intervention within the first days or first year of life. However, CCHD is often treatable, and with early detection and treatment babies affected can often lead longer, healthier lives. CCHD can encompass abnormalities in the rhythm of the heart, as well as a wide array of structural heart problems. These problems can range from mild (never requiring cardiac surgery) to severe (requiring multiple different stages of open heart surgeries). CCHD can involve abnormal or absent chambers, holes in the heart, abnormal connections in the heart, and abnormalities in the function or squeeze of the heart. Most congenital heart conditions affect individuals from childhood through adulthood.  

Condition Type:

Core Conditions


Critical congenital heart disease (CCHD) is estimated to affect 2 out of every 1,000 babies born each year in the United States.

More Information for Parents:
Also known as:
  • CCHD
  • Critical congenital heart defect

Core Conditions