Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Mitral Regurgitation Overview

What is mitral regurgitation?
A person with mitral regurgitation has a leaky mitral valve. A normal mitral valve allows blood to flow from the left atrium, into the left ventricle. The mitral valve closes to prevent the backflow of blood from the left ventricle into the left atrium. Mitral regurgitation results when the mitral valve does not completely close, due to scarring, thickening, or malformation of the valve. Blood leaks from the left ventricle, into the left atrium. Common causes of mitral regurgitation include mitral valve prolapse and a heart attack. Severe mitral regurgitation can lead to congestive heart failure.

What are the symptoms of mitral regurgitation?
Symptoms of mitral regurgitation include fatigue, cough, faintness, and difficulty breathing that worsens with exertion and while lying flat. Additional symptoms of mitral regurgitation include palpitations, weight loss, leg swelling, and increased urination.

How does the doctor treat mitral regurgitation?
Treatment for mitral regurgitation may include heart valve surgery and medications.

Continue to Mitral Regurgitation Incidence

Last Updated: Aug 20, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Mitral Regurgitation References
  1. Condado JA, Velez-Gimon M. Catheter-based approach to mitral regurgitation. J Interv Cardiol. 2003 Dec;16(6):523-34. [14632950]
  2. Enriquez-Sarano M, Avierinos JF, Messika-Zeitoun D, Detaint D, Capps M, Nkomo V, Scott C, Schaff HV, Tajik AJ. Quantitative determinants of the outcome of asymptomatic mitral regurgitation. N Engl J Med. 2005 Mar 3;352(9):875-83. [15745978]
  3. Filsoufi F, Salzberg SP, Adams DH. Current management of ischemic mitral regurgitation. Mt Sinai J Med. 2005 Mar;72(2):105-15. [15770340]
  4. Pierard LA, Lancellotti P. The role of ischemic mitral regurgitation in the pathogenesis of acute pulmonary edema. N Engl J Med. 2004 Oct 14;351(16):1627-34. [15483281]
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