blue baby

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A colloquial name, becoming obsolete, for an infant suffering from congenital cyanotic heart disease, the commonest forms of which are tetralogy of Fallot and transposition of the great vessels, in which the circulation is misdirected. Both of these conditions result in the presence of partially deoxygenated blood (which is blue in colour) in the peripheral circulation, which gives the skin and lips a characteristic purple colour. Surgical correction is often possible at an early stage. If untreated, infants may survive months or years with persistent cyanosis.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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