Aortic Stenosis :-
The aorta is the main artery that carries blood out of the heart to the rest of the body. Blood flows out of the heart and into the aorta through the aortic valve. In aortic stenosis, the aortic valve does not open fully. This decreases blood flow from the heart.
In aortic stenosis, the aortic valve becomes partially obstructed, leading to significant heart problems. The aortic valve guards the opening between the left ventricle and the aorta. The aortic valve opens as the left ventricle begins to pump, allowing blood to eject out of the heart and into the aorta. When the ventricle has finished beating, the aortic valve closes to keep blood from washing back into the left ventricle.
The main causes of Aortic Stenosis include:
- A birth defect of the aortic valve, which normally has three cusps:
- A two-part aortic valve becomes stenotic with progressive wear and tear
- An aortic valve that has only one cusp or has stenosis from birth
- Progressive hardening and calcification of the aortic valve with age
- Scarring of the aortic valve caused by rheumatic fever
Symptoms of Aortic Stenosis:
If the valve is only mildly narrowed you are not likely to have any symptoms. If the narrowing becomes worse the left ventricle has to work harder to pump blood into the aorta. The wall of the ventricle becomes thickened (hypertrophied).
Symptoms that may then develop include:
Dizziness and faints due to the restricted blood supply. Irregular heart beat which you may feel as the sensation of a ‘thumping heart. Chest pain (angina) when you exert yourself, this occurs because of the increased need for oxygen by the thickened ventricle and because of reduced blood flow to the coronary arteries. If the narrowing is severe the left ventricle may not function properly and you can develop heart failure. This causes shortness of breath, tiredness and fluid build-up in various tissues of the body.
Diagnosis of Aortic Valve Stenosis:
After reporting your symptoms to your general doctor, you may be referred to a cardiologist. Cardiologist will check your physical condition with a thorough examination. This includes listening to your heart for any abnormal sounds. You may need imaging tests to show what is going on inside your heart.
The following are some of the imaging tests used:
- MRI Scan, CT scan
- Cardiac Catheterization
- Chest X-Ray, Echocardiogram
Prevention of Aortic Stenosis:
Aortic Stenosis cannot be prevented. But if you have Aortic Stenosis, there are several things you can do to try to avoid some of the complications, such as get regular medical care, including exams and tests. Only certain people with Aortic Stenosis need antibiotics before dental or medical procedures. Ask your doctor if you need antibiotics to prevent infection of the heart valve.
Best Treatment Options of Aortic Stenosis:
Nothing has yet been proved to slow the progression of Aortic Stenosis. In randomized trials, statin therapy has been ineffective, sometimes by replacement of the aortic valve.
Drugs that can cause hypotension should be used cautiously, although nitroprusside has been used as a temporizing measure to reduce after load in patients with decompensate heart failure in the hours before valve replacement. Patients who develop heart failure but are too high risk for valve intervention benefit from cautious treatment with dioxin, diuretics, and ACE inhibitors.
- Balloon Valvuloplasty: a balloon device is passed through the arteries to open or enlarge the stenotic aortic valve. This may provide temporary relief of symptoms. But since the valve can become blocked again, this treatment is not a permanent solution.
- Aortic Valve Replacement: during this open surgery, the defective heart valve is replaced with either a bioprosthetic valve or a synthetic valve.
- Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement: this surgery also involves replacing the defective valve. But this is minimally invasive surgery that involves inserting the replacement valve through a small incision in the chest or through an artery in the leg.
Seek counsel from our Houston Cardiologist if you suspect you are suffering from Aortic Stenosis for the best treatment options for you.
Visit us at: www.advancedcardiodr.com|Call: +1 281-866-7701