Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Heart valve disease or leaky heart valve takes place whenever one or more of the heart valves fail to work in a proper manner. The heart consists of four different valves, which include the aortic valve, mitral valve, pulmonary valve and tricuspid valve.

These valves incorporate tissue flaps, which close and open with each of your heartbeat. These flaps further assure about the flow of the blood in the appropriate direction from the four chambers in your heart and to remaining parts of your body.

Signs and Symptoms

Major signs and symptoms of the heart valve problem i.e. leaky heart valve include unusual sound of heartbeat referred commonly as heart murmur. However, most of the individuals dealing with heart murmur without any cardiac problems, while others may have the problem because of heart valve problem, but do not experience any sign or symptom.

Heart valve problems become worse with time, because of which signs and symptoms take place after many years of hearing the murmur. Most of the people dealing with this problem do not have any symptom until and unless they reach to their middle ages.

Besides the murmur or heartbeat sound, a few individuals deal with various other common signs and symptoms related to heart valve problems related to heart failure. These are

  • Unusual tiredness or fatigue feelings.
  • Breathing shortness, particularly when a person exerts or lies down.
  • Swelling in the feet, ankles, legs, veins and abdomen areas.

However, in some of the cases, heart valve problems cause severe chest pain and that too when individuals exert themselves. In this case, the patients may notice a racing pattern, fluttering or an irregular heartbeat. Along with this, a few types of heart valve problems, like mitral valve or aortic valve stenosis may cause fainting or dizziness.

Can You Die From A Leaky Heart Valve?

Can You Die From A Leaky Heart Valve?

Probability associated with causing death in case of leaky heart valve depends on the risk factors associated with the respective problem and outlook of patients.

Age: Old age individuals remain at relatively higher risk related to heart valve problems, as with age heart valves become thick and stiff.

Health History: Individuals with a history of Infective Endocarditis, heart failure, heart attack, rheumatic fever or leaky heart valve in the past remain at high risk for further diseases.

Coronary Heart Problems: Patients remain at high risk related to leaky heart valve if they have risk factors related to coronary heart problems. These risk factors are high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, insulin resistance, smoking, diabetes, obesity or overweight, lacking physical activities and family history related to previous cardiac problems.

Outlook of Leaky Heart Valve

Bicommissural Aortic Valve: Some of the individuals born with two flaps in the aortic valve instead of total three or in other cases, two flaps out of total three fused together to act as a single flap. This situation refers to bicommissural aortic valve. People dealing with type of congenital condition may more likely develop the problem of leaky aortic heart valve.

Advanced Valve Problems: Many individuals possess heart valve diseases or defects, but do not have any symptom. For some patients, the condition stays same during their entire life and do not create any problem. For others, heart valve problem becomes worse slowly until and unless symptoms develop. If your problem remains untreated, the advanced heart valve problems may cause stroke, heart failure, clotting of blood or even death because of sudden cardiac arrest.

Lifestyle Changes: Until now, there are no medicines, which may help in curing the heart valve problem. However, by bringing changes in medicines and lifestyle, you may expect to get relieve from most of your complications and symptoms. These treatments may reduce the risk related to developing sudden cardiac arrest, stroke or any other life-threatening conditions.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: October 11, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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