Heart Valve Disease An Overview
What is heart valve disease?
Heart valve disease occurs when there is dysfunction in one or more of the four heart valves—mitral, aortic, tricuspid, or pulmonary. Dysfunction of the heart valves may be the result of narrowed (valvular stenosis) or leaking (valvular regurgitation) valves. Heart valves disease may lead to shortness of breath, dizziness, heart enlargement (cardiomyopathy), or chest pain.
Heart valve disease is often categorized in three ways: regurgitation, stenosis, and atresia.
- Regurgitation: When a valve doesn’t close tightly enough blood flows back into the chambers instead of towards the heart.
- Stenosis: If the flaps of a valve thicken, stiffen, or fuse, blood is not able to fully pass through the valves.
- Atresia: When the heart valve is not equipped with an opening for blood to pass through.
Some patients are born with heart valve disease, or it can develop over time.
Visit Buckeye Heart & Vascular Institute
Buckeye Heart & Vascular Institute is home to highly trained cardiologists who focus on advanced diagnostic testing and screenings for a range of heart and vascular concerns. Our team can work with you to asses your risk for heart valve disease and recommend that appropriate solution to help improve your heart health and function. To learn more about our services, contact one of our convenient locations.
Heart Valve Disease What to Expect
About Heart Valve Disease
Common Symptoms of Heart valve Disease: Symptoms of heart valve disease may vary from patient to patient. Some patients don’t experience any symptoms.
- Shortness of Breath
- Fluid retention
- Heart murmur
- Irregular heartbeat
If left untreated, heart valve disease may lead to an increased risk of heart attack, blood clots, or stroke.
Common Causes of Heart Valve Disease: Although there is no stand-alone cause of heart disease, there are several factors that might contribute to the development of heart valve disease.
- Heart Failure
- Advanced High Blood Pressure
- Heart Attack
- Rheumatic Fever
- Infection: Infective Endocarditis
How is heart valve disease diagnosed? Every diagnosis begins with a complete evaluation of a patients’ heart. A doctor will check for symptoms like a heart murmur, enlarged heart, and fluid retention. A doctor may perform one or more series of test to identify heart valve disease.
- Cardiac Catheterization
- Stress Test
- Chest X-Ray
A doctor can also monitor the progression of valve disease with the series of test listed above, and determine if treatment is needed.
Can heart valve disease be treated? In some cases, patients may not need immediate treatment. Some doctors may schedule regular visits to check the condition of the heart and valves. In other cases, patients may need medication, heart valve repair surgery, heart valve replacement surgery.
The type of treatment a patient receives will depend on the overall condition of the heart, type of heart valve disease, the severity of damage, and age.