Heart and Vascular

Managing mitral valve regurgitation with care

Your heart has four valves that keep your blood flowing in one direction through the heart. The mitral valve controls blood flow from the left atrium to the left ventricle. From the left ventricle, blood flows out to the body. Mitral valve regurgitation, also called mitral insufficiency, occurs when the valve doesn't close tightly and blood leaks backwards through the faulty valve.

Is your mitral valve working as it should? The integrated team at Goshen Heart & Vascular Center works together to diagnose and treat both acute and chronic valve regurgitation in Goshen, IN. Talk to your primary care provider about a heart screening or call (877) 566-4660 for a referral.

Mitral valve regurgitation symptoms

If you have mild mitral valve regurgitation, you may never experience symptoms. It can take years to develop symptoms, even with moderate valve disease. Over time, mitral valve regurgitation can cause your heart to work harder to pump blood. This eventually weakens the heart and causes signs of heart failure.

Heart failure symptoms from mitral valve regurgitation include:

  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Shortness of breath even at rest
  • Swollen feet and ankles

Mitral valve regurgitation can also occur suddenly, causing severe shortness of breath, chest pain, fast heart rate, weakness and lightheadedness. Call 911 if you experience these symptoms.

Causes of mitral insufficiency

You may develop chronic mitral valve regurgitation if your heart valves are prone to wear with age. Other mitral valve regurgitation causes include:

  • Calcium buildup in the valve
  • Congenital heart disease
  • Heart failure and other heart problems
  • Rheumatic fever, a complication of strep throat

Acute mitral valve regurgitation, a sudden rupture of the valve, is a life-threatening emergency that is usually caused by a heart attack or endocarditis. Call 911 and seek emergency treatment.

Chronic and acute mitral valve regurgitation treatment

Our goal at Goshen Heart & Vascular Center is to catch your mitral valve disease early and preserve your heart health. People with chronic mitral valve regurgitation may never need treatment. If you do need treatment, our fellowship trained cardiologists may recommend medication to relieve symptoms and prevent complications. Eventually, you may need surgery to repair or replace the valve.

Acute mitral valve regurgitation requires emergency surgery, and we are equipped with the latest technologies in our cardiac hybrid suite, the first of its kind in the area.

The key to preventing mitral valve regurgitation and other types of heart disease is having a heart-healthy lifestyle. Our team can help you create a plan to improve your diet and exercise habits, as well as offer our smoking cessation program. Call (877) 566-4660 for a referral today.

Serving Elkhart County and beyond, Goshen Heart & Vascular Center treats mitral valve disorders, such as mitral valve regurgitation, in Goshen, IN.