If you have heart valve disease, you may have a leaking heart valve that doesn’t properly close or a valve that’s stiff and narrow. Sometimes, surgery may be necessary.
Dignity Health offers comprehensive heart care, including heart valve repair, in the Bay Area. To learn more about your treatment options for your heart condition, Find a Doctor and make an appointment today.
When Heart Valve Disease Requires Treatment
As long as your heart valve disease is not severe, your doctor will aim to preserve your own tissues, rather than perform a heart valve replacement with a mechanical device. Common conditions requiring surgery include:
- Regurgitation, where blood seeps back into the heart because valve don’t close tightly
- Stenosis, which causes heart valves to become stiff or misshapen
- Narrowing of the heart valves due to plaque buildup
Types of Heart Valve Repair Performed at Dignity Health
A variety of procedures, minimal and major, treat heart valve disease.
Your options for minimally invasive heart valve repair include balloon valvuloplasty and robotic valve surgery. Balloon valvuloplasty involves stretching a narrowed valve by inserting a tiny balloon into your heart using cardiac catheterization. In Robotic valve surgery, your Dignity Health surgeon makes small incisions in your chest to repair your heart valve using a robotic device.
Open heart surgery may include ring annuloplasty or valve repair. Ring annuloplasty is where a piece of plastic or cloth is sutured around a leaking heart valve. Valve repair is where the tissue flaps that form the “doors” of your heart valves are trimmed and reshaped.
Recovery from Heart Valve Repair
Even minimally invasive heart valve surgery is considered a major procedure. You can expect to spend several days in a Dignity Health hospital, and initially in an intensive care unit. Your recovery will depend a lot on your overall health. It usually takes four to six weeks to fully recover. You may feel some pain in your chest area for days or weeks.
Before you head home, your doctor will provide specific instructions on the activities you can perform while your heart heals. Make sure to eat a healthy diet and walk as much as your doctor allows.
Dignity Health doctors are experts at treating heart valve disease. Done right, surgery can re-energize you and significantly increase your quality of life.
Dignity Health offers heart valve repair in the Bay Area, including San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and Redwood City.