The Heart Valve Disease
By: Clayton Anderson
Heart Valve Disease
The disease occurs when the Heart Valve does not function properly.
Your heart valves lie at the exit of each of your four heart chambers and maintain one-way blood flow through your heart. The four heart valves make sure that blood always flows freely in a forward direction and that there is no backward leakage.
Blood flows from your right and left atria into your ventricles through the open tricuspid and mitral valves.
When the ventricles are full, the tricuspid and mitral valves shut. This prevents blood from flowing backward into the atria while the ventricles contract.
Congenital valve disease:
Valves may be the wrong size, have malformed leaflets, or have leaflets that are not attached correctly.
Bicuspid aortic valve disease:
Instead of the normal three leaflets or cusps, the bicuspid aortic valve has only two. Without the third leaflet, the valve may be stiff (unable to open or close properly) or leaky (not able close tightly).
is caused by an untreated bacterial infection (usually strep throat).
Mitral valve prolapse (MVP): (Common Condition)
affecting 1% to 2% of the population. MVP causes the leaflets of the mitral valve to flop back into the left atrium during the heart's contraction. MVP also causes the tissues of the valve to become abnormal and stretchy, causing the valve to leak. Rarely ever shows symptoms.
An irregular heart beat, "Heart Murmur", tiredness, shortness of breath, and swelling in several parts of the body.
As of right now, there is no cure or treatment for the heart valve disease. To keep from getting it or it getting worse though, there are a few steps...
Exercise Regularly, Treat Heart Failure, Lower High Blood Pressure, etc.
Chest X-ray: Shows the location and size of the heart.
CT Scan: The standard testing for a heart valve disease.
Cardiac Catheterization: Measure blood pressure, evaluate the heart function, and help determine the best course for treatment.
Heart Valve Disease is common through out the U.S. More than 600,000 Americans die each year from this disease and up to 1.5 million suffer. 50% of patients don't live long with this disease.
Living with this Disease
It's a life long condition. If not careful and you don't visit the doctor regularly, it can cause heart failure or other life-threatening conditions. Checking with your doctor regularly can prevent it from worsening if you take proper care of yourself.
"An Overview of Heart Valve Disease." WebMD. WebMD, n.d. Web. 10 Mar. 2015. "What Is Heart Valve Disease?" - NHLBI, NIH. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Mar. 2015.