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Mitral valve repair is a surgery to repair a mitral valve that isn't working properly due to valvular heart disease. Mitral valves can have one of two malfunctions:
Regurgitation – The valve doesn't close completely, causing blood to flow backward instead of forward through the valve.
Stenosis – The valve does not open properly or becomes narrow, inhibiting the flow of blood out of the chambers of the heart. When this happens, the heart is forced to pump blood with increased force in order to move blood through the stiff (stenotic) valve.
When mitral valves fail to open and close properly, the heart can become damaged. Heart valve problems are one cause of heart failure.
How is mitral valve repair surgery performed?
There are different mitral valve repair techniques. Most are performed during open-heart surgery.
Annuloplasty is a mitral valve repair procedure where an abnormal section of the valve is removed, the edges are sutured back together and a cloth-covered ring is placed around the valve
Commissurotomy is a surgery where mitral valve flaps are surgically separated to relieve stenosis.
In some cases, mitral valve repair is performed through a small incision, in a minimally invasive procedure, without having to open the chest.
Sometimes, damaged mitral valves cannot be repaired and have to be replaced.
What are the advantages of mitral valve repair surgery?
Mitral valve repair surgery has several advantages over mitral valve replacement surgery:
Improved survival rates
Better heart function after surgery
Lower risk of stroke and infection
Eliminates the need for blood thinners after surgery
Why choose Stanford Hospital & Clinics for mitral valve repair?
Stanford has long been at the forefront of surgical techniques to treat mitral valve disorders. Craig Miller, MD has conducted ground-breaking, NIH supported research in surgical therapy for mitral valve disorders and leads our team. Our surgeons work closely with our cardiologists both in echocardiography and heart failure to ensure the best possible outcomes for our patients.
Stanford Health Care is a proud recipient of the 2022 Mitral Valve Repair Reference Center Award from the American Heart Association and the Mitral Foundation for excellence in mitral valve repair surgery.
The Stanford Medicine Online Second Opinion program offers you easy access to our world-class doctors. It’s all done remotely and you don’t have to visit our hospital or one of our clinics for this service. You don’t even need to leave home!