Cyanotic Heart Disease: Signs and Symptoms

What are the signs and symptoms of cyanotic heart disease?

Cyanotic heart disease may cause your child's skin to appear blue, especially on the lips, fingers, toes and nail beds. The word "cyanosis" literally refers to this blue condition. Some people may have heard this called "blue baby syndrome." Some children with long-standing cyanosis also have short, clubbed fingers and puffy eyes.

Infants and babies with cyanotic heart disease may have trouble feeding and decreased appetite. Older children with cyanosis may not have as much energy as other children their age, and exercise often makes the blue color worse and can cause breathlessness.

Note: Just because your child has cyanosis does not necessarily mean they have cyanotic heart disease; cyanosis can also occur from a pulmonary issue. Sometimes acrocyanosis (blue hands and feet) is seen in normal newborn babies, and is due to poor peripheral circulation, but this is a normal condition.

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