Out of the four important valves of the heart, mitral valve is one of them. Mitral Valve Prolapse is also known by three other names such as floppy mitral valce, Barlow Syndrome and click-mumur syndrome.
The role of the mitral valve is to control or regulate the blood flow between the left ventricle and atrium respectively. You can find two leaflets with the mitral valve. One or both the flaps of the valve swells too big during mitral valve prolapse and the chordate tendinea becomes ineffective. Because of this action the closure of the valve is not proper during each heart beat. When this scenario takes place, a small quantity of blood ideally leaks, going back from the left ventricle of heart to the atrium.
When the valve functions correctly, the heart has a healthy circulation. Prolapse poses no injury to the heart in between symptoms. Just about 2% of population has other structural heart problems in addition to mitral valve prolapse.
Older SMO (Standing Medical Orders) were less affective, this problem found to have afflicted 5-20% of the population, primarily women. In present times with better, echocardiographic measures, it is now considered that the disease is among 2-3% of population, and this is generally between the ages of twenty and forty years of age.
Causes of Mitral Valve Prolapse
Generally the cause of mitral valve prolapse cannot be identified. Few people may acquire this problem through heredity, more particularly those linked with ailments such as Marfan’s syndrome. Marfan’s syndrome is a genetic disorder related to connective tissue which leads to uncommon extended limbs, slack joints, and swelling in the aorta, the principal artery of the heart.
Almost forty percent of population has dysautonomia. Related to the autonomic nervous system, this is a section of the nervous system that takes care of involuntary functions of body such as reparatory and circulatory. Symptoms may be apparent but generally not serious for most cases.
Mitral Valve Prolapse Symptoms
Approximately sixty percent of people identified with mitral valve prolapse demonstrate no symptoms what so ever. A taxing action, like birth of a child, change of job, or viral illness, may produce few signs that may include the following:
- Irregular heartbeat or palpitations, particularly when a person is lying on left side causing weight and pressure upon the heart.
- Chest pain – Shooting, numbness, or pressure which extends for a few seconds to many hours, generally not linked to myocardial ischemia
- Dizziness when standing
- Shortness of breath
- Low energy
When to go for Medical Care
Contact your doctor if signs of the problem continue. Chest pain that is intermittent, palpitations, or giddiness are common symptoms.
When mitral valve prolapse is diagnosed, contact with a physician is suggested if signs of congestive heart failure like swelling in the leg or shortness of breath occur. This connotes that the mitral valve is badly leaking backward into the left atrium (this is a mitral insufficiency).
A patient with heart murmurs must discuss with a physician before using antibiotics to prevent infection for not so serious surgical procedures or dental surgery. Pregnant women should refer to their primary physician.
A person should seek medical attention if signs of heart failure arouse. Signs such as dizziness, blackout/unconsciousness, or a persistent and unpleasant feeling that the heart is moving too fast should not be ignored at any cost.
Exams and Tests
When standard symptoms of mitral valve prolapse are presented, initial prognosis is heart trouble and is treated as dire. Basic body assessment is then taken place. On the physical examination of the body there may or may not be signs that there is mitral valve prolapse.
A certain diagnostic of the heart is used to find the problem; there are several different diagnostic tests. These tests do not cause any pain and can be completed quickly. Here are the most common procedures:
Electrocardiogram (referred to as ECG): Evaluates the rhythm and the electrical activity of the heart from multiple angles. This information is very useful in locating heart attacks, cardiac arrhythmias, and thickening of arteries.
Echocardiogram (referred to as ECHO): Makes use of sound waves (ultrasound) to give a moving picture of the heart on a video screen. It shows the movement of all the valves of the heart. Echo tests result fair conclusions regarding mitral valve prolapse, in rare cases it may not detect the problem. The echo also enables to quantify the degree of abnormality, including any major leaky mitral valve.
Ambulatory ECG: The Holter monitor measures heart beat and electrical activity for a long period, generally 24 hours. The patient has this device close to the chest while performing regular actions. A diary of activity is maintained so that any anomaly observed on the ECG can be connected with what the action at that time. This test may be suggested if the patient is having lightheadedness, giddiness, or palpitations.
Stress ECG: Like an ECG the focus is any type of arrhythmia caused by stress, generally physical exercise. Chest discomfort lead on by any physical stress is referred to this test.