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What Causes You To Have Mitral Valve Disease?

Mitral valve is situated between the left chambers of the heart, that is, the left auricle and left ventricle.[1] In mitral valve disease, there is a problem with this valve, and it does not function as it should. There are different types of mitral valve disease. These include mitral valve regurgitation and mitral valve stenosis.[2]

What Causes You To Have Mitral Valve Disease?

Mitral valve disease can happen due to many causes. Some types of mitral valve disease can be present from the birth itself. Such type is known as a congenital heart disease.[3] Causes of mitral valve disease are different for mitral valve regurgitation and mitral valve stenosis.

What Causes You To Have Mitral Valve Disease?

Causes of regurgitation of mitral valve

  • When the regurgitation is due to a problem in the mitral valve itself, it is also known as regurgitation of primary type
  • This is usually caused due to a prolapse of the mitral valve
  • In a prolapse of mitral valve, the flaps of the valve move back into the left auricle, whereas normally they should open in the left ventricle and get back and close exactly where the left ventricle and the left atrium meet each other
  • Another cause of mitral valve regurgitation is any disease of the left ventricles
  • This is known as a secondary mitral valve regurgitation, as the problem is not with the valve itself, but the ventricle[4] [5]

Causes of mitral valve stenosis

  • Mitral valve stenosis is usually a result of rheumatic fever
  • A rheumatic fever is a side- effect of a strep infection, which can affect the heart[6]

Symptoms Seen In Mitral Valve Disease

  • You may not experience any signs or symptoms for years if you do not suffer from a severe condition
  • The symptoms rather depend upon the severity of your disease and how rapidly it develops and progresses

They may include the following-

  • There might be an abnormal sound heard, that is called as a heart murmur, heard during auscultation
  • There may be a breathing difficulty known as dyspnea, which can be particularly evident after an exertion or when you are lying down
  • There may be excessive tiredness or fatigue
  • There may be a sensation of a fast or a fluttering heartbeat, also known as heart palpitations
  • Your feet, ankles and in severe cases the legs may appear swollen
  • There may be dizziness or giddiness experienced by some
  • There may be a chest pain or chest discomfort
  • Some may experience coughing up of blood

The symptoms of this condition may also be triggered by other conditions like stress, pregnancy or an infection. They may also appear or worsen after an exertion or after a work out[7]

Your doctor may find certain signs on auscultation during physical examination, which might be indicative of a heart problem. These may include-

  • An abnormal heart sound on auscultation
  • Lungs sounding of a fluid buildup
  • Arrhythmias or irregular heartbeats

Risk Factors Related To Mitral Valve Disease

Some factors that put you on an increased risk of getting mitral valve disease are-

  • Aging
  • History of getting certain infections that may be responsible for affecting the heart
  • Being affected by certain types of heart disease
  • Being affected by a heart attack
  • History of exposure to certain drugs

Some heart conditions that are present from the time of birth (CHD or congenital heart disease)[8]

Complications Related Mitral Valve Disease

Mitral valve disease can be responsible for causing many complications, including but not limited to the following-

  • Atrial fibrillation– which means irregular heart rhythms in the upper chambers of the heart
  • Blood clots
  • Pulmonary hypertension– a high blood pressure in which the blood vessels in lungs are affected
  • Heart failure
  • Stroke[9]

Mitral valve disease affects the mitral valve of the heart, which is a valve present between both the left chambers of the heart. This disease can affect the pumping of blood to various parts of the body.


Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:October 15, 2022

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