Heart valve surgery

Valve replacement; Valve repair; Heart valve prosthesis; Mechanical valves; Prosthetic valves

Heart valve surgery is used to repair or replace diseased heart valves.

Blood that flows between different chambers of your heart must flow through a heart valve. Blood that flows out of your heart into large arteries must also flow through a heart valve.

These valves open up enough so that blood can flow through. They then close, keeping blood from flowing backward.

There are 4 valves in your heart:

  • Aortic valve
  • Mitral valve
  • Tricuspid valve
  • Pulmonic valve

The aortic valve is the most common valve to be replaced. The mitral valve is the most common valve to be repaired. Only rarely is the tricuspid valve or the pulmonic valve repaired or replaced.

Heart, section through the middle

The interior of the heart is composed of valves, chambers, and associated vessels.

Heart, front view

The external structures of the heart include the ventricles, atria, arteries and veins. Arteries carry blood away from the heart while veins carry blood into the heart. The vessels colored blue indicate the transport of blood with relatively low content of oxygen and high content of carbon dioxide. The vessels colored red indicate the transport of blood with relatively high content of oxygen and low content of carbon dioxide.

Heart valves - anterior view

There are four valves located in the heart. Each valve either consists of two or three folds of thin tissue. When closed, the valve prevents blood from flowing backwards to its previous location. When open the valve allows blood to flow freely. Valve problems can occur because of congenital abnormalities, infection, or other causes.

Heart valves - superior view

There are four valves located in the heart. Each valve either consists of two or three folds of thin tissue. When closed, the valve prevents blood from flowing backwards to its previous location. When open the valve allows blood to flow freely. Valve problems can occur because of congenital abnormalities, infection, or other causes.

Heart valve surgery - series

There are four valves in the heart: aortic valve, mitral valve, tricuspid valve, and pulmonary valve. The valves are designed to control the direction of blood flow through the heart. The opening and closing of the heart valves produce the heart-beat sounds.

Description

Why the Procedure Is Performed

Risks

Before the Procedure

After the Procedure

Outlook (Prognosis)