Aortic Valve Disease
Morphologic and functional changes of the Aortic Valve (stenosis or regurgitation) can cause significant cardiological symptoms requiring medical treatment or structural valve repair or replacement.
What is Aortic Valve Disease?
The aortic valve controls blood flow from the main pumping chamber of the heart (left ventricle) to the rest of the body through the main artery to your body (the aorta). In aortic valve disease the valve has become narrowed (stenosis) or started to leak (regurgitation).
Aortic valve disease can cause symptoms of chest pain, shortness of breath, dizziness or syncope (fainting).
Treatment depends on the severity of the problem, co-morbidities like other underlying disease and age of the patient. Younger patients will have open heart surgery to repair or replace the valve. Older patients especially those with high operative risk, will undergo a minimally invasive procedure called TAVI (transcutaneous aortic valve insertion) through a little needle inserted in the groin artery.
Aortic valve disease is a condition in which the valve between the main pumping chamber of your heart (left ventricle) and the main artery to your body (aorta) doesn't work properly.
Types of aortic valve disease include:
In aortic stenosis the cusps of the aortic valve may become thickened and have reduced mobility. They may also join or fuse together. The valve becomes narrowed and is unable to open fully. This results in reduced blood flow from your heart into your aorta and the rest of your body.
In aortic regurgitation, the aortic valve does not close properly, allowing blood to flow backward into the left ventricle. Treatment depends on the type and severity of your aortic valve disease. In some cases, it may require surgery to repair or replace the aortic valve.
What are the symptoms of aortic valve disease?
Some people with aortic valve disease may only have minor symptoms for several years. The signs and symptoms associated with aortic valve disease include:
shortness of breath
dizziness and/or fainting
chest pain or tightness
fatigue and reduced effort tolerance
swelling of the ankles and feet
What assessment will I need if I have aortic valve disease?
The initial diagnosis is likely to be on examination after the doctor has taken a detailed history from you. On physical examination he will hear a loud and pronounced heart murmur through his stethoscope. The doctor will then perform an echocardiogram to confirm the diagnosis and to evaluate the aortic valve structures and severity of aortic valve disease using detailed measurements of pressure gradients and valve opening surface.
We also regularly perform transesophageal echocardiographies if needed for more accurate sizing and measurements in case of higher grade aortic valve disease.
Cardiac CT and Cardiac MRI are also frequently used as part of the diagnostic pathway
What are the treatments for aortic valve disease?
The heart treatment depends on the type and severity of your aortic valve disease, age of the patient and his underlying conditions. In some cases, it may require open heart surgery to repair or replace the aortic valve and in others a minimally invasive replacement (TAVI) can be performed done.
What intervention/treatment does CardioCare offer for Aortic valve disease?
Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI)