Also known as mitral stenosis, mitral regurgitation or failure
Heart valve diseases are grouped according to the diseased valve, the type of problem (stenosis or regurgitation) and the severity of the problem. The most common cardiac valve diseases are found in the aortic and mitral valves.
The mitral valve, which is located between the left atrium and the left ventricle, may become stenotic or may regurgitate (fail).
When the mitral valve is stenotic (mitral stenosis), the valve opening is smaller than normal and the heart has to do extra work to pump blood through this opening.
When the mitral valve regurgitates blood or closes improperly (valve regurgitation or failure), the valve does not seal when closed; blood then backs up against the normal flow and leaks into the left atrium.
Many pathologies may cause both mitral stenosis and regurgitation to varying degrees:
After filling out a comprehensive questionnaire and performing a physical exam, the doctor will prescribe some of the following tests to confirm the diagnosis, establish the severity of the problem and determine the best treatment if he or she suspects mitral valve disease:
Depending on the severity of the disease as determined by the medical evaluation and diagnostic tests, the doctor will recommend: