Aortic Valve Disease, Animation

Aortic Valve Disease, Animation

the aortic valve serves to ensure
one-way flow of oxygen-rich blood from the left ventricle to the aorta and to
the body it opens when the left ventricle contracts and pumps blood and
closes when the ventricles refill to prevent blood from flowing back to the
left ventricle the aortic valve consists of three leaflets or cusps a defective
valve is one that fails to either open or close properly. Aortic stenosis
happens when the aortic valve does not open fully reducing blood flow. Aortic regurgitation on the other hand occurs when the valve does not close
tightly causing backward flow to the ventricle the common outcome of both
situations is that the heart does not pump enough blood to the body and heart
failure may result symptoms may develop suddenly or slowly over decades and may
include fatigue shortness of breath especially when exercising chest pain or
tightness dizziness fainting swelling in the ankles and feet and poor feeding and
growth in children in attempts to compensate for the low blood output the
left ventricle grows larger to generate higher pressures and pump harder this
enlargement may help to relieve symptoms at first but eventually it causes the
ventricle to become weak and fail risk factors for both conditions include
congenital heart valve disease some people are born with abnormal structures
that increase the risks of valve malfunctioning common defects include
having two leaflets instead of three fused leaflets and dilation of the
aortic root stiffened valve due to calcium deposits as a result of aging
and valve damage due to infection or inflammation and conditions such as
endocarditis and rheumatic fever. Aortic valve diseases produce
characteristic heart murmurs that are useful for diagnosis. Aortic stenosis
gives rise to a crescendo decrescendo systolic murmur which starts shortly
after the first heart sound it is often preceded by an ejection click caused by
the open of the stenotic valve the murmur is
loudest in the aortic area and the sound radiates to the neck. Aortic regurgitation produces a diastolic murmur which is heard along the left sternal
border it peaks at the beginning of diastole when the flow is largest then
rapidly decreases as the ventricles are filled diagnosis is usually confirmed by
echocardiography a damaged valve usually requires surgical repair or replacement
several repair procedures are available depending on the type of defect valve
replacement is often preferred as a long-term solution especially for aortic
stenosis in which the valve tends to become narrow again after a repair
procedure artificial valves can be mechanical or bio prosthetic mechanical
valves last longer but usually require lifelong administration of anticoagulant
medications to prevent formation of blood clots you

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