Tags: heart valves | surgery | stenosis

Fixing Damaged Heart Valves

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Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 04:36 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Once valve problems develop, you essentially have a mechanical problem in your heart.

Medications can help relieve the pressure on the heart valves, but eventually a malfunctioning heart valve may need to be repaired or replaced.

For instance, a normal aortic valve opening is 3 to 4 square centimeters. Stenosis becomes critical when the opening falls below one square centimeter.

At that point something must be done.

But determining the right time to take action is tricky. Most often, heart valve repair or replacement requires open-heart surgery.

Over the years, these procedures, like other cardiac surgeries, have become safer. But whenever you have surgery, there is some degree of risk involved.

Therefore, you don’t want to have the surgery performed prematurely. On the other hand, you don’t want to wait too long.

Whether the problem is with your aortic or mitral valve, there are two things you need to consider:

1. Make sure that you absolutely need the procedure. Get a second opinion, and even a third, if you’re unsure.

2. Once you are certain you need the procedure, find an experienced cardiac surgeon at a hospital or heart center that specializes in treating heart valve disease and is comfortable with both repair and replacement.

This advice will serve you well, whether you opt for traditional valve replacement, valve repair, or the latest in less invasive procedures.

 

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Dr-Crandall
Over the years, these procedures, like other cardiac surgeries, have become safer. But whenever you have surgery, there is some degree of risk involved.
heart valves, surgery, stenosis
227
2016-36-22
Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 04:36 PM
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