Dr Francis Fontan

What is a Fontan Procedure?

A Fontan procedure is an operation done for children who have abnormal hearts and cannot have their hearts repaired with two pumping chambers (ventricles).

The operation connects the veins bringing back the blood from the body directly into the lung arteries. After the Fontan operation, the heart is used as a single ventricle that ejects the blood with oxygen in the body.

The blue blood without oxygen coming back from the body does not go back to the heart to be ejected into the lungs as normal. It is flowing passively, directly into the lungs, without being pushed by the heart.

The name of the procedure comes from the name of the doctor who was the first to describe this operation in 1971, Dr Francis Fontan.