Exercise restrictions will depend on whether the patient received the two-ventricle repair (Rastelli and VSD closure) or the single ventricle approach (culminating in the Fontan).
Regular activity is encouraged for all patients. Those who received the two-ventricle approach to treatment with a good hemodynamic result may pursue near normal exercise levels in the absence of residual defects and if ventricular function is good.
For those patients who received single ventricle treatment, careful exercise testing is important before setting limits and extreme exertion and dehydration should be avoided. The effects of the Fontan operation on the performance of the lungs and on the anatomy of the thorax may also be factors in determining safe levels of exercise. If a patient has been prescribed the anticoagulant warfarin, contact sports should be avoided as they may lead to serious injury.
Anyone with congenital heart disease, repaired or non-repaired, should consult with their cardiologist about physical activity to review the risks.