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Functionally univentricular heart

Functionally univentricular heart is the term used to describe a number of congenital heart defects whose common feature is the lack of two fully-developed pumping chambers (ventricles).

This includes:

  • hypoplastic left heart syndrome (where the left ventricle is smaller than usual)
  • tricuspid atresia (where the valve linking the right ventricle and the right atrium (tricuspid valve) is closed or missing) resulting in a small right ventricle
  • double inlet ventricle (where both upper filling chambers (atria) pump blood into one of the pumping chambers (ventricle), resulting in one larger ventricle and one small ventricle)


Our Cardiorespiratory Unit regularly refers to information published by the British Heart Foundation (BHF) and the Children's Heart Federation when explaining functionally univentricular heart to our patients and their families. More information can be found in the following factsheets.

Visit the BHF website to download:








Read more about tricuspid atresia on the Children's Heart Federation website

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