Different Types of Heart Valve Problems

human heart

The human heart pumps oxygen-rich blood to the body’s organs and tissues. Your heart is comprised of four chambers and four valves, which work to keep blood flowing in a single direction throughout the body. Disease or damage that affects the heart valves lowers the efficiency of your heart and can affect your overall health if treatment is not sought.

Heart Valve Stenosis

To function properly, the heart’s valves must open and close completely. If a valve becomes unable to open fully, the heart must work harder to pump blood through that valve for distribution to the rest of the body. This condition is called heart valve stenosis, and may affect any one of the four valves inside the heart. Valve stenosis may be due to a birth defect affecting the shape of the valve, or it may form later in life as a consequence of the aging process. If you suffer from heart valve stenosis, your cardiologist will discuss your condition and treatment options, which frequently include surgical repair of the valve to reduce stress on the heart.

Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral valve prolapse, sometimes called MVP, is a common condition that affects the mitral valve in the heart. If you have mitral valve prolapse, the flaps of your mitral valve do not close properly as the heart pumps. This often allows blood to flow backward into the left atrium chamber of the heart. Those with mitral valve prolapse are often diagnosed through the detection of a heart murmur , or unusual sound in the heartbeat. In many cases, mitral valve prolapse is harmless and requires no treatment. However, if MVP affects the function of the heart or causes problematic symptoms, surgical treatment may be needed to repair the mitral valve.

Heart valve disease or damage can be life-threatening, but with treatment you can live a long and healthy life. If you’d like to speak with a board certified cardiologist in Phoenix , call Cardiac Solutions today at (623) 208-5305 to schedule your appointment. Visit us on the web to learn how your heart works and how to keep it healthy. 

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