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 Our heart has four valves: the tricuspid valve, the mitral valve, the pulmonary valve, and the aortic valve. These valves have flaps, known as ‘leaflets’ in the case of tricuspid and mitral valves and ‘cusps’ in the case of pulmonary and aortic valves. As our heart beats, each valve opens and closes once and allows the blood to flow through the heart in the right direction. As per Dr.Sujay Shad, Heart Surgery Specialist in Delhi, in some people, at least one of the valves improperly works because of being damaged or diseased. Such people are said to be suffering from heart valve disease and are recommended for heart valve surgery.

There are many questions regarding heart valve surgery that patients rumble through their heads. This post answers some of the frequently asked questions about heart valve surgery. Read on to learn more!


What is heart valve surgery?


Heart valve surgery is an open or minimally invasive operation done to repair or replace the diseased or damaged heart valve. It is carried out by a cardiovascular surgeon.


What is the purpose of heart valve surgery?


As per Dr. Sujay Shad, Heart Surgery Specialist in Delhi is performed to treat two types of heart valve diseases:


  • Stenosis (narrowing/ stiffening of valve)

  • Regurgitation (leaking of valve that causes blood to backflow).


What happens if you don’t get valve surgery?


If you have been diagnosed with a heart valve disease and you have been recommended for a heart valve surgery, you would probably be scared and confused to undergo an operation. You may make yourself isolated and might be thinking of avoiding or postponing your surgery, but that is not right!


If you are evaluating whether you should undergo heart valve surgery or not, a further piece of information is very important for you to note.


What is the valve problem in the heart?


Heart valve disease is a structural heart problem. Medications may relieve its symptoms but the ultimate cure of heart valve disease is a surgical repair or replacement. As per research, if you have heart valve disease and you ignore heart valve surgery, you have chosen a very dangerous path.  


Heart valve disease can sometimes be life-threatening, especially when it is severe valve stenosis or regurgitation. There is a need for surgical valve repair or replacement. According to heart surgery specialist research, if aortic stenosis patients who have onset of symptoms are left untreated, 50% of them will die after two years of being diagnosed.


Why must timely heart valve surgery be done by a heart suregry specialist?


Heart valve surgery cures patients suffering from severe heart valve disease. The patient undergoing heart valve surgery,  must focus on the benefits the surgery provides. If the patient is not timely treated, his/her mortality rate is considerably higher. A heart valve surgery when done without delay can prevent serious health complications.  This can also save your life, and provide you many more years of healthy life.  


How do you know if you need heart valve surgery?


In case you have no symptoms or your symptoms are mild, you may be recommended for some lifestyle changes and medicines. Furthermore, you must regularly get your heart health checked.


However, if your heart valve disease is severe, you will need to undergo a heart valve surgery.


You can know if you need heart valve surgery by looking for the following signs and symptoms:


  • Heart murmur (abnormal heart sound) heard through a stethoscope

  • Irregular heartbeat or palpitations

  • Shortness of breath, particularly when you lie down or when your body has been very active

  • Swollen ankles, feet, or abdomen

  • Dizziness

  • Chest pain

  • Fatigue or extreme tiredness

  • Rapid weight gain because of fluid retention.


In some cases, patients do not experience any symptoms. There is still severe valve leakage or poor blood flow through the valves. Heart valve surgery needs to be done as soon as the heart valve disease or damage is diagnosed.


When is tricuspid valve surgery necessary?


Tricuspid valve surgery is necessary in cases where the tricuspid valve is diseased or damaged, affecting the amount and direction of blood flow through the heart. A cardiovascular surgeon recommends surgery if the patient is having tricuspid valve regurgitation, stenosis, or atresia. The surgery is necessary to reduce symptoms of these valve conditions and the risk of complications like heart failure and death.


Consult an Expert for More Details!


Dr. Sujay Shad, is an expert and senior heart surgery specialist practising at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. He is an expert heart surgeon who performs lifesaving heart surgeries from heart transplant to Open Heart Surgery in Delhi. Visit him for more details on these surgeries and their benefits!