Mitral Valve Stenosis - Treatment Overview
Mitral valve repair may be done in one of
- Balloon valvotomy. A thin flexible tube
(catheter) is inserted through an artery in the groin or arm and threaded into
the heart. When the tube reaches the narrowed mitral valve, a balloon located
on the tip of the catheter is quickly inflated. The balloon, pressing against
the narrowed mitral valve leaflets, separates and stretches the valve opening
and allows more blood to flow through the heart. This procedure does not
require open-heart surgery, so recovery is easier.
commissurotomy. This method of repair requires open-heart surgery. A surgeon
removes calcium deposits and other scar tissue from the mitral valve leaflets,
which opens the valve. This procedure is used for people who have severe
narrowing of the valve and are not good candidates for balloon valvotomy.
Mitral valve replacement surgery
is also an open-heart procedure. The damaged heart valve is removed and
replaced with a new valve. It is generally the last choice in mitral valve
stenosis treatment, because an artificial mitral valve cannot work as well as a
normal mitral valve.
Your doctor will likely recommend valve
replacement if the valve has deteriorated to the point that repair is not an
option or if the anatomy of the valve has been changed by one or more repair
procedures and can no longer be repaired.
See a picture of
mitral valve replacement surgery .
Before you have valve replacement surgery, you and your doctor will decide on which type of valve is right for you. To help with this decision, see:
- Heart Valve Problems: Should I Choose a Mechanical Valve or
Tissue Valve to Replace My Heart Valve?