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Valvular Heart Disease


Overview

The human heart comprises four valves namely – Mitral valve, Tricuspid valve, Aortic Valve, and Pulmonary Valve. The condition of the heart where one or more of the four valves fail to open or close properly is termed as Valvular Heart Disease. This condition is mainly associated with aging but can also occur due to congenital abnormalities, pregnancy, or Rheumatic Heart Disease.

Classification

Valvular Heart Diseases are mainly classified into two types
  • Aortic and Mitral Valve Diseases
  • Pulmonary and Tricuspid Valve Diseases

Types

Types of valvular diseases are
  • Valvular Stenosis or narrowing 

In this condition, the valves get stiff thereby narrowing the valvular opening thereby compromising the blood flow. This narrowing of valves is called Stenosis.

  • Valvular Prolapse 

In this condition, the valve flaps do not open or close properly causing blood leakage. This slipping of the valve leaflets out of place is called Prolapse.

  • Regurgitation 

Improper closure of valves causes a backward flow of blood. This is also called as leaking.



Signs & Symptoms

  • Chest discomfort
  • Palpitation
  • Excessive fatigue
  • Swelling on abdomen, legs & ankles
  • Dizziness


Causes Or Risk Factors

  • Growing age
  • Congenital Heart Defects
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Conditions like Rheumatic Fever
  • Infections like Endocarditis
  •  Coronary Artery Diseases
  • Hyperlipidemia or raised blood cholesterol

Diagnostic Tools

⦁ Physical examination
⦁ ECG (electrocardiogram)
⦁ Cardiac Doppler
⦁ Chest X-ray
⦁ Stress Test
⦁ Angiogram
⦁ MRI Heart


Treatment

⦁ Lifestyle modification
⦁ Oral medication
⦁ Valve repair surgery
⦁ Valve replacement surgery


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