Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Can You Be Cured Of Mitral Valve Disease?

Yes, you can be cured from mitral valve disease. there are three types of mitral valve disease namely. mitral stenosis (MS), mitral regurgitation (MR) and mitral valve prolapse (MVP).

There is no medical therapy to cure mitral valve disease, but medical therapy is directed to treat the cause or complications of mitral valve disease. Surgery is the treatment and there are two types of surgeries mitral valve repair and mitral valve replacement. If you are detected with a mitral valve disease and if you are asymptomatic and does not have any other complications you can stay for awhile without any surgery with regular follow ups with your cardiologist. Your doctor will decide when you need surgery and the type of surgery.

When Mitral Valve Surgery Is Considered?

The actual decision depends on your clinical status and investigation findings. This is a rough guideline on the instances when surgery is considered.

  • Mitral stenosis
    • When complications such as atrial fibrillation (AF) pulmonary hypertension has developed.
    • Asymptomatic patients with moderate or severe MS
    • Symptomatic patients with moderate or severe MS
    • Before the development of any complications
  • Mitral regurgitation
    • Moderate or severe MR with left ventricular dysfunction
    • Progressive cardiac enlargement
  • Mitral valve prolapse
    • MVP is associated with MR and AF
    • MVP is associated with severe MR

Mitral Valve Repair

Mitral valve repair is the first surgical option that is considered and it is found to have more success rates with less complications than mitral valve replacement. Therefore, many cardiothoracic surgeons prefer mitral valve repair whenever possible over mitral valve replacement. There different approaches of repair according to the type of mitral valve disease.

The advantages of mitral valve repair

Preserves The Heart Function. Repairing of the damaged valves are carried out, then the original heart valves are reconstructed. This preserves the natural shape and function of the heart.

No Lifelong Medications. Valve replacement (prosthetic valves) can be either mechanical valves or bioprosthetic valves. Insertion of a prosthetic valve tends to form blood clots and you need to be on lifelong anticoagulants. However, the risk of blood clot formation is reduced in bioprosthetic valves compared to the mechanical valves. But most of the times you may need to take blood thinning agents for the rest of your life. These are not required if you undergo valve repair. These blood thinning drugs can cause severe bleeding if not monitored properly.

Longer Durability. Studies have shown that function of the repaired valves 15 years after surgery is about 82-87% whereas with valve replacement the function is 72-82%. Other than that, bioprosthetic valves wear out easily than the mechanical valves and needs to be replaced in about 10-12 years.

Better Survival Chance At The Time Of Surgery. The mortality rate of mitral valve repair is about 1-2% and in mitral valve replacement it’s about 5-7%.

Mitral Valve Replacement

Mitral valve replacement is done when the mitral valves are severely damaged and calcified beyond repair. You need to be on life long anticoagulation and the risks associated with replacement is high compared to repair. However, this can be the option if repair cannot be done.

Early Surgical Intervention

It is shown that early surgical intervention done before symptoms develop and before heart function is affected has good prognosis. The heart function remains normal after the surgery most of the time and these patients live longer compared to the patients who undergo surgery after the development of complications and significant heart dysfunction.

Summary

Yes, you can be cured from mitral valve disease. there are three types of mitral valve disease namely. mitral stenosis (MS), mitral regurgitation (MR) and mitral valve prolapse (MVP). There is no medical therapy to cure mitral valve disease but medical therapy is directed to treat the cause or complications of mitral valve disease. Surgery is the treatment and there are two types of surgeries mitral valve repair and mitral valve replacement. Mitral valve repair is the first surgical option that is considered and it is found to have more success rates with less complications than mitral valve replacement. Therefore, many cardiothoracic surgeons prefer mitral valve repair whenever possible over mitral valve replacement.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: February 7, 2019

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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