The heart has four valves that consist of flaps of tissue that prevent the backflow of blood into or out of the chambers of the heart. It is possible for these valves to deteriorate due to age or health risk factors, which cardiologists can diagnose as heart valve disease.
There are three primary ways the heart valve can be damaged. These can present with debilitating symptoms or no symptoms at all. The cardiovascular experts at Buckeye Heart and Vascular Institute in Dayton, OH describe the three types of heart valve disease that may affect you.
If a heart valve does not close tightly, blood can flow back into the chamber in what specialists call regurgitation. Sometimes this condition is minor and does not require medical intervention. More severe cases can put a strain on the heart, forcing it to work harder.
Your doctor will examine your heart for signs of a murmur, enlargement, or fluid retention. Major damage may require surgery to repair the valve. However, other factors can contribute to the treatment plan, including the patient’s age and medical history.
A heart valve stenosis occurs when the valve is too narrow and cannot open properly. This causes the heart to pump harder to get blood where it needs to. It may also result in lower oxygen levels.
Your doctor can discuss a treatment plan that suits your unique needs during a consultation. They may prescribe medication to improve the blood flow to and from your heart or recommend surgery, depending on the severity of the heart valve disease. If the condition is not severe, your doctor will likely still recommend regular exams to ensure the heart still works properly.
Atresia refers to a defect in which the heart valve or chamber is underdeveloped such that appropriate blood flow is not possible. Patients with this condition are born with this issue, though the precise cause is unknown.
The condition is diagnosed in babies and young children, as symptoms usually are recognized in early development. This will require surgical intervention and potentially a replacement in order to treat.
Treat Heart Valve Disease in Dayton, OH
Buckeye Heart and Vascular Institute offers treatment for heart valve disease and other cardiovascular conditions to patients in Dayton, OH. If you are concerned about your heart or veins, you can consult our expert team. To schedule an appointment with us, contact our office online or reach us by phone at 937.203.8602.