Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Repair in Tunisia

About Atrial Septal Defect (ASD)

An atrial septal defect (ASD) is a hole in the wall (septum) between the upper two chambers of the heart, known as atria. It is a congenital defect, that is, the defect is present at the time of the birth.

Some ASDs are extremely small and never cause any trouble. Some may close on their own during infancy or early years after the birth. However, for symptomatic ASDs, people may need treatment during their childhood or adulthood, depending on the severity of the symptoms.

ASDs may also go unnoticed or undiagnosed. However, symptoms such as breathlessness, swelling in the legs, heart palpitations, and heart murmurs can be a sign of ASD. Therefore, it must be repaired then and there.

How is Atrial Septal Defect Treated?

Atrial septal defects are repaired or treated through following two approaches. The ASD repair cost depends on which of these approaches are applied.

  • Transcatheter ASD Repair: This is a minimally invasive procedure, which is performed in a catheterization lab. In this approach, a catheter is passed from a blood vessel in the arm or groin area to reach the site of the defect. The mesh is placed on top of the defect to close it. After securing the mesh, the catheter is withdrawn.
  • Surgical ASD Repair: This approach is more common as compared to the transcatheter repair. In this case, the surgeon makes an incision in the chest to access the defect and place a patch to cover the hole. Before the surgery, the patient is put on a heart-lung bypass machine so that the surgeon can repair it.

The success rate of both approaches is more than 98 percent. However, transcatheter ASD repair has been associated with quicker recovery.

Factors Affecting the Cost of ASD Repair Surgery Cost

The following factors affect the Atrial Septal Defect repair cost:

  • The approach used for the repair
  • Size of the defect
  • Experience of the specialist
  • Choice of hospital or clinic
  • Location of the hospital or clinic
  • Age of the patient
  • Presence of other comorbidities
  • Duration of hospital stay
  • Other hospital charges
  • Unforeseen circumstances
Treatment and Cost

30

Total Days
In Country

2 No. Travelers

7 Day in Hospital

23 Days Outside Hospital

Treatment Price not available

Get a Quote

Hospitals

About the Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Repair

Holes in the heart are a type of congenital heart disease. Ventricular septal defect (VSD) and atrial septal defect (ASD) are the two most common congenital defects that may affect an individual. These occur due to structural malformation in the walls of the heart when these are developing at the fetal stage. ASD and VSD can be repaired and closed as soon as they are identified or right after birth. ASD is the hole in the septa that divides the two atrium and VSD refers to the hole in the ventricular walls. The holes allow the reverse flow of blood, thus, facilitating the mixing of pure and impure blood.

  • To understand the holes in heart we must briefly understand the working of the heart. The heart works like a pump beating on an average of 100,000 times in a day. It has two sides which are divided by a wall called septum. The right side of the valve pumps blood to the lungs and picks up oxygen. The oxygen-rich blood then returns to the left side of the heart from the lungs and then the left side pumps it to the rest of the body.
  • These two sides are divided into 4 chambers having four valves connecting them to various blood vessels. For carrying blood from the body to the heart, veins are responsible while arteries carry the blood away from the heart to be circulated to the body. The atria are two upper chambers that collect blood while ventricles are the two lower chambers pumping the blood to the lungs and other parts of the body.
  • The valves act like doors allowing a flow of blood through the next chamber to arteries and then they close to keep the blood from again returning back to the previous chamber from where it came. In a systolic contraction, the ventricles pump blood from the heart and in a diastolic contraction, the ventricles relax to receive blood pumped by the atria. The aortic and pulmonary valves close at the beginning of the diastole to prevent the chances of backflow. Thus, the presence of a hole in the septa may lead to mixing of the blood and interfere with the normal flow of blood circulation in the body.
  • An ASD is naturally present when the baby is still a fetus. But the hole closes on its own by the time of birth. However, in some cases, it may persist even after birth. An ASD can be of different types, including sinus venosus atrial septal defect, mixed atrial septal defect, ostium secundum atrial septal defect. A VSD, on the other hand, is usually detected in a baby or in an adult when a doctor observes a heart murmur. Certain tests such as an echocardiogram or electrocardiogram are performed to confirm its presence.

Typically, medications are administered to see whether ASD or VSD closes on its own. In case the defect does not close on its own and the individual continues to experience atrial septal defect symptoms such as breathing difficulties, heart murmurs, shortness of breath, and respiratory infections, then a surgery is recommended. The surgical procedure for atrial septal defect repair and ventricular septal defect treatment are almost the same, except the fact that different parts of the heart are targeted during the surgery.

How is Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Repair performed?

Two different types of approaches can be used for ASD and VSD repair or closure, depending on the experience of the surgeon, the overall health of the patient, and certain other factors. The first is open-heart surgery and the second one is cardiac catheterization. Irrespective of the approach used, the patient is administered a general anesthetic so that he or she does not feel any pain and is asleep during the procedure.

Open heart surgery:

The main surgical approach used to repair or close ASD or VSD is open-heart surgery. It is conducted by making an incision in the chest and using surgical instruments to open the chest to gain access to the heart. The heart is then put on bypass, which involves connecting it to a machine that pumps blood to the body during the surgery. For the same reason, it is also known as the heart-lung bypass machine. The surgeon then repairs the hole by closing it with sutures or by placing a biological patch on it that mixes with the muscle. Once the hole is repaired, the chest is then closed and the incision site is closed with sutures.

Cardiac catheterization:

It is a minimally invasive procedure conducted using a catheter, which is inserted into the blood vessel of the groin. The catheter is then guided up to the heart and mesh material is placed over the hole through the catheter to close the defect. Once the repair is made, the catheter is removed.

Within a period of 6 months, normal tissues start growing in and around the mesh. Only a needle puncture is made in this procedure and hence this is less invasive as a procedure. This procedure is usually successful until and unless the hole is too large and only an open surgery can solve the problem.

Recovery from Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Repair

Recovery from ASD/VSD Surgical procedure

The patient will be transferred to the intensive care unit (ICU) for a day or so for continuous monitoring. Antibiotics will be administered to the patient to prevent infections such as endocarditis. Regular checkups will follow for a while to ensure that the hole gets closed properly. To prevent the formation of blood clots, the patient may be given aspirin. Apart from all these, for the first few months, activities will be kept limited till that patient is fit enough to handle physical exertion.

Patient Stories

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the health care infrastructure of Tunisia / Why should opt for Tunisia as a destination for your medical treatment?
Hospitals in Tunisia are developing and trying to meet the international standards of healthcare. Although there is a basic set up in most of the hospitals for treatment in Tunisia, one can still expect scope for improvement. The Ministry of Health, along with the Government of Tunisia is making effective changes for the healthcare sector. The private hospitals in Tunisia are also undergoing a robust change to provide effective healthcare and treatment in Tunisia.

Like most other countries, hospitals in Tunisia have a private and public healthcare system. Hospitals in Tunisia include three levels of care: primary, with a network of 81 clinics and 2091 basic health centers; secondary, with 109 district hospitals; and tertiary, with 33 regional hospitals and 24 modern CHUs, according to MoS figures.
What are the conditions of the hospitals in Tunisia? Are they JCI certified? What is the quality of the support staff in the hospitals?
The Joint Commission International (JCI) is a global leader in health care accreditation. JCI accreditation is considered a gold standard in worldwide health care. It provides the most skilled and experienced healthcare professionals in the medical industry, as evaluators of the rigorous international standards in healthcare quality and patient safety.
In Tunisia, there are no JCI accredited hospitals but 4 private hospitals are certified ISO and OHSAS (Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series).
Are the doctors/surgeons in Tunisia of the best quality?
The hospitals in Tunisia have seen a constant change in terms of development and technology. Most doctors that are trained in the country understand the needs and requirements of people and are able to diagnose and treat them well. There are various surgeons that fly in from other countries as well to treat patients. This was brought about due to the economic reforms and various expats residing there. The varying levels of health organizations provide reasonable means of treatment for any patient. There are also trained paramedical and emergency service staff in this country.
What is the process for obtaining a medical visa in Tunisia?
Patients who wish to visit Tunisia for medical purposes must contact the Embassy of Tunisia in their home country. One is required to have a valid passport. Those applicants must submit their visa application forms in person together with the following documents:
  1. A duly completed application form with one picture (within a white background).
  2. Original biometric passport and one copy. Passports should have a validity of at least one year from the date of your visa application submission.
  3. Medical certificate stating the type of illness and the treatment to be carried out. This document has to be in English or Spanish language.
  4. Letter from the hospital in Tunisia stating the appointment date and whether the treatment expenses have been already paid in full.
  5. Proof of financial means which enable the applicant to meet life needs while in Tunisia (salary certificate if working, bank statement for the last six months, property deeds, commercial license, other sorts of income).
  6. Travel insurance.
  7. Proof of accommodation (hotel reservation, etc)
  8. Applicants are advised that ALL PASSPORTS HAVE TO REMAIN at the Embassy premises while the visa application is under process (between 10 and 15 days), and therefore cannot be retrieved unless very special and urgent circumstances might arise.
  9. The Embassy has the right to require from the applicant any document that it may deem relevant in order to resolve the visa file.
What support services does MediGence provide in Tunisia?
MediGence enables you to plan and manage your medical decisions better. These are some of our services offered:
  • Expert Opinion
    We help you seek an Expert Opinion on your diagnosis and treatment from an experienced team of doctors at MediGence and specialists from a reputable hospital.
  • Hospital Recommendation
    We recommend a hospital or a healthcare institution that is best suited for you, based on your ailment and its criticality.
  • 360-degree Hospital Review
    We give you a transparent and holistic view of the hospital and its infrastructure, accreditation, facilities, and expertise to give you confidence.
  • Doctor Validation and Communication
    We share a comprehensive profile of the treating doctor and also arrange a call to clear queries regarding treatment if needed.
  • Options to Choose From
    Based on your choice of destination and other preferences, we provide you multiple options with respect to hospitals and doctors to choose from.
  • 24X7 Patient Care Support
    A dedicated patient case manager stays in constant touch with you to help you at every step of the decision-making process and resolve queries that you may have.
  • Transparent Treatment Cost and Other Expenses
    We give a clear and accurate indication of the total cost of treatment including treatment, stay, meals, and other expenses.
  • Visa Assistance
    We provide and help prepare documentation for visa approval and coordinate with the embassy to expedite the visa process.
  • Accommodation Arrangements
    We propose to you a choice of accommodation based on your preference such as long stay, short stay, or luxury properties.
Which are the best cities in Tunisia for medical treatment?
Tunis is the largest country and capital of Tunisia. This country is located in the northern region of Africa and is the best city for treatment in Tunisia.

Our team of healthcare experts would be happy to assist you

Get In Touch
or call

(+1) 424 283 4838