Dr. Aklog shares what a patent foramen ovale/PFO is.
A PFO or a patent foramen ovale is a connection between the two atrial chambers or receiving chambers of the heart, between the right atrium and the left atrium. It’s a connection that exists in childhood, sorry exists in the womb and typically seals itself off in early childhood, when the patient’s an infant. In some patients, that connection can stay open all the way through adulthood and sometimes their entire life.
The reason a patent foramen ovale is important is that it’s a connection, abnormal connection, between the right side of the heart where the blood is supposed to be pumped to the lungs, and the left side of the heart where the blood gets pumped to the body, and it’s a channel through which clots in the veins or other types of debris can work its way from the right side to the left side and cause a stroke if it lodges into the brain.
About Dr. Aklog, M.D.:
Dr. Lishan Aklog is the current Director and Chief of Cardiovascular Surgery at The Heart and Lung Institute of St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona and Director of EmpowHer's Medical Advisory Board. Specializing in adult cardiac care, he graduated from Harvard College followed by Harvard Medical School. Dr. Aklog was a cardiothoracic resident at Brigham and Women’s/Boston Children’s Hospital, an Associate Chief of Cardiac Surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, and completed international fellowships in London, England and Paris, France.
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