Congenital malformations of the heart are relatively uncommon but important in that they may seriously impair the health and longevity of the individual or cause the death of the infant at or shortly subsequent to its birth. My purpose in this article is to present evidence that congenital heart disease may be caused by some of the same factors as those that produce reduced fertility of the parents.
Embryologists employ the term "monster" to apply to fetuses and full term infants in whom congenital malformations are present. The word monster is applied whether the malformations are of the heart, nervous system or elsewhere. This explanation is given as many of the statements to be quoted were made in reference to monsters, but are considered applicable to the problem of congenital malformations of the heart.
OPINIONS AS TO THE CAUSE OF CARDIAC MALFORMATIONS
Most clinical writers express the opinion that the