Mitral Valve Regurgitation - Overview
Tests for acute regurgitation may include one or more of
these same tests, as well as a transesophageal echocardiogram. In this test, a
sound-wave device is passed down the
esophagus to take clearer pictures of the
Finding out that something is wrong with your heart is
scary. You may feel depressed and worried. This is a common reaction. Sometimes
it helps to talk to others who have similar problems. Ask your doctor about
support groups in your area.
How is it treated?
Treatment for chronic cases includes regularly checking your heart to make
sure it is working properly. Treatment also includes preventing infection and
treating symptoms as they occur. Your doctor may have you take medicines,
You may need surgery to repair or replace your mitral
valve if you get symptoms of heart failure, if the size of your left ventricle
(your heart's main pumping chamber) increases, or if your heart weakens.
Some doctors believe it's best to repair or replace the valve before you
develop severe symptoms, because it leads to better long-term health. On the
other hand, surgery is a major procedure that has its own risks and
complications. Even if you have no symptoms, talk to your doctor about the
benefits of surgery, as well as your heart's condition, your age, and your
Treatment for acute mitral valve regurgitation
occurs while you are in the hospital or the emergency room. Because heart
failure usually occurs with acute regurgitation, vasodilators are given
by IV. You need surgery right away to repair or
replace the valve.
If you have chronic mitral valve
regurgitation, your doctor may want you to make some lifestyle changes to ease
the load on your heart.
- You may need to be careful about physical
activity. Talk to your doctor before starting an exercise program.
- You may need to cut down on salt in your diet.