Mitral valve replacement is a surgical treatment for a damaged mitral valve, which functions to allow blood to flow between the left atrium and the left ventricle of the heart. During this valve procedure, a surgeon replaces the old valve with a new one to help your heart work better. Mitral valve replacement prevents complications and relieves symptoms of mitral valve disease.
If you’d like to learn more about St. Joseph's Heart & Vascular Institute’s expertise in mitral valve replacement in Stockton region, the first step is to Find a Dignity Health Doctor.
Are You a Candidate for Mitral Valve Replacement?
Your doctor may refer you to a cardiac surgeon for mitral valve replacement to determine if the procedure would be right for you. It depends on several factors, including existing medical conditions and birth defects.
Two conditions that cause mitral valve disease are:
- Mitral valve stenosis: Narrowing of the valve results in reduced blood flow. Rheumatic fever from untreated strep throat is the main cause of mitral valve stenosis.
- Mitral valve prolapse: Blood backs up into the lungs because of a leaky (regurgitant) valve. A variety of heart conditions can cause this.
If a mitral valve is damaged beyond repair, mitral valve replacement surgery may be the best option for treatment.
State-of-the-Art Mitral Valve Replacement at Dignity Health
Our doctors recommend traditional (open heart) or minimally invasive surgery on a case-by-case basis. A mitral valve replacement will be performed at St. Joseph's Medical Center by a highly trained, experienced surgeon. You’ll need to stay in the hospital for several days after surgery.
During a minimally invasive procedure, your surgeon makes several small incisions in your chest to access the mitral valve. Using very small instruments, your surgeon removes the damaged mitral valve and replaces it with a new one.
If you have open heart surgery, your surgeon makes a long incision in your chest by your breastbone to access the heart and replace the valve.
Mitral Valve Replacement Recovery
After surgery, you’ll spend time in a cardiac unit and may move to a regular hospital room once you are stable. Your hospital stay and recovery time will be shorter with minimally invasive surgery.
When you’re ready to go home, your care team will provide special instructions on how to care for your incision, prescription medication for pain, and information on what activities are safe to perform while you recover.
Most people feel much better after mitral valve replacement as it relieves chest pain, shortness of breath, and fatigue associated with a faulty mitral valve. You’ll likely have increased energy because more oxygen-rich blood will be moving throughout your bloodstream.
Look to Dignity Health as a partner in your heart health and overall-wellbeing. Reach out to us to learn more about our advanced heart valve surgeries and tools for heart health.
St. Joseph's Heart & Vascular Institute performs mitral valve replacement in Stockton, CA and the surrounding areas.