Getting Familiar with Common Heart Valve Diseases

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Getting Familiar with Common Heart Valve Diseases

Posted on 12/16/2021 by BMB


The human heart beats 24/7 to ensure a continuous supply of blood to different areas of the body, its normal functioning is crucial for our existence. This very much depends upon the normal working of the various parts of the heart, which includes the four valves - mitral valve, tricuspid valve, aortic valve and pulmonic valve. Mitral and tricuspid valves separate the upper and lower chambers of the heart whereas aortic and pulmonic valves separate the lower chambers and the major blood vessels that serve as a passage for the blood that is leaving the heart. All the heart valves have important functions to carry out, however, there are various different conditions that can prevent them from carrying out these functions normally. Commonly referred to as heart valve diseases, these conditions can either be congenital, i.e. present since birth, or acquired later in life, due to varied reasons like age related wear and tear, underlying medical condition and unhealthy lifestyle practices. Heart valve diseases can be managed with the help of valve replacement, a procedure that involves the surgical replacement of the damaged valve with a prosthetic one. Heart valve replacement surgery in Kolkata is offered at all the leading hospitals.

 

We have discussed some common heart valve diseases in this blog with the help of the top heart specialist in Kolkata.

 

Stenosis - Valvular stenosis is a condition marked by the stiffening or narrowing of the heart valves, which restrict the flow of blood passing through it. The moat common type of valvular stenosis is aortic stenosis. Aortic stenosis can be caused by age related wear and tear, injury to the heart valve, underlying medical condition or plaque accumulation. Plaque is a waxy deposit of calcium and cholesterol, that can build up in the valves. As time passes by, these deposits become hard and tend to solidify, resulting in severe blockage. A person suffering from valvular stenosis is likely to experience symptoms like breathlessness, angina, general body weakness, abnormality in heart rate, dizziness, and syncope.

 

Regurgitation - It is a condition marked by leakage in the heart valves which may range from mild to severe. Minor cases of heart valve regurgitation do not require any major treatment however in cases of severe valve regurgitation, you may be required to consider surgical options. Valve regurgitation is quite likely to happen if the leaflets of your heart valves are not closing properly, allowing the blood to flow backwards, i.e. in a direction that is opposite to the direction of the normal flow. Depending upon the value that has been affected, valve regurgitation can be broadly classified into four types - mitral valve regurgitation, aortic valve regurgitation, pulmonary valve regurgitation and tricuspid valve regurgitation. Common symptoms of heart valve regurgitation include breathlessness, fatigue, angina and fluttering heartbeat.

 

Endocarditis - It is a condition marked by an infection in the inner lining of the heart, that can involve the heart valves as well. Although there are many possible causes of endocarditis, the infection is quite likely to be triggered by bacteria or fungi, that invade your bloodstream. If the condition is not addressed immediately, it can progress to cause severe damage to your valves and even prove to be life threatening. A person suffering from endocarditis is likely to experience breathing difficulties, weakness, chills, fever, and oedema.

 

Rheumatic heart valve disease - As the name clearly suggests, it is a disease marked by severe damage to the heart valves owing to rheumatic fever, an inflammatory condition that involves different parts of the body such as the heart, brain, joints and skin. If streptococcal infections are left untreated for long, the body's immune system jumps in, leading to an inflammatory condition that damages the valves. Experts from the best heart hospital in Kolkata suggest that although the problem can affect people of any age group, it is most likely to affect children living in the age group of 5 to 15 years. Pneumatic heart disease is not by symptoms like swelling and tenderness in the joints, fever, development of nodules under the skin, redness, rashes, breathlessness, chest discomfort and general body weakness.