What is a PFO?
One in four (25%) of the population have a patent foramen ovale (PFO). more commonly known as a hole in the heart. Initially thought to be benign, an emerging number of disease and conditions now appear related to the presence of the PFO.
There are known associations between stroke, migraine with aura and decompression illness but the true risk of to the wider population is not yet understood....
PFO Fast Facts
- A patent foramen ovale (PFO) is an opening covered by a flap of tissue in the wall of the heart that separates the two upper chambers or atria.
- PFOs are very common, more than 20% of all humans have one. Estimates range from 20-30% depending on the decade of life.
- PFO’s are found in up to 55% of young (<60 yo) patients with stroke of unknown cause and 50-75% of patients suffering from migraine with aura.
- Unless a patient has symptoms related to a PFO or other associated heart defects, there’s no need to seek treatment.
- Most PFO’s in healthy people are incidental findings but in some patients the PFO is related to a problem.
- The most common problem associated with a PFO has been a stroke or a temporary neurological event and/or severe migraine headaches.
- A PFO can allow deoxygenated blood (venous blood with a low amount of oxygen) or blood clots to pass from the right side of the heart to the left and travel to the brain, preventing blood flow to that part of the brain or lowering oxygen levels for the whole body.
- PFO treatment for patients with strokes of unknown cause typically involves extended use of blood-thinning medication such as aspirin, or prescription drugs, or physically closing the PFO using one of several devices
- Several clinical trials are underway for PFO patients who have suffered a stroke or who suffer from migraines to assess the role of device closure of PFO
We have teamed up with mycause, Australia's #1 online fundraising & crowdfunding site to help us raise money to get our pioneering PFO genetic study underway.
Click on the links below to go straight to our mycause webpage to donate or see how you can help.
Our Research Goals
Genomic and Metabolomic traits of a patient with PFO
Relationships between PFO, Stroke & Dementia
links between PFO & migraine with aura
High Performance Athletes and PFO
We have teamed up with mycause, Australia’s #1 online fundraising & crowdfunding site to help us raise money to get our pioneering PFO genetic study underway. Click on the links below to go straight to our mycause webpage to donate or see how you can help. https://www.mycause.com.au/charity/17775/PFOResearchFoundationLtd
Majority of FDA Advisors Give Green Light to Amplatzer PFO Closure Device for Stroke – Daily News – TCTMD. It appears that finally there is some sunlight coming over the horizon for PFO suffers in the USA with FDA advisors giving a green light to PFO closure for stroke with the Amplatz PFO Occluder. Click on the link above to go the the TCDMD article.