Mitral valve prolapsed

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Overview

Mitral valve prolapse (MVP), also known as floppy mitral valve syndrome, systolic click-murmur syndrome, and billowing mitral leaflets, is a valvular heart disease disorder. It is a benign condition. In rare cases, it may present with sudden cardiac death, endocarditis or a stroke.

The condition affects nearly 3% of the US population. The disorder produces symptoms as a result of a redundant and abnormally thickened mitral valve leaflet prolapsing into the left atrium during systole. Mitral valve prolapse is the most common pathology leading to 

MVP is usually identified during a clinical exam on cardiac auscultation. Echocardiography confirms the diagnosis. This disorder is the most common cause of the non-ischemic mitral valve is mitral regurgitation in the US. 

Symptomatic patients may need mitral valve repair.

Symptoms

Mitral valve prolapse doesn’t cause symptoms for most people. And those who do have symptoms might not have a severe form of the condition. Symptoms and severity don’t always go hand-in-hand when it comes to mitral valve prolapse. Still, it’s important to share any and all symptoms with your provider.

Symptoms may include:

Anxiety.

Blood pressure that gets too low when you stand up (orthostatic hypotension).

Chest pain.

Dizziness.

Fatigue.

Heart palpitations. These can feel like bursts of rapid heartbeat or an awareness of your heartbeat.

Migraines.

Causes

To understand the causes of mitral valve disease, it may be helpful to know how the heart works.

The mitral valve is one of four valves in the heart that keep blood flowing in the right direction. Each valve has flaps (leaflets) that open and close once during each heartbeat. If a valve doesn't open or close properly, blood flow through the heart to the body can be reduced.

In mitral valve prolapse, one or both of the mitral valve leaflets have extra tissue or stretch more than usual. The leaflets can bulge backward (prolapse) like a parachute into the left upper heart chamber (left atrium) each time the heart contracts to pump blood.

The bulging may keep the valve from closing tightly. If blood leaks backward through the valve, the condition is called mitral valve regurgitation.

Risk factors

Ebstein anomaly.

Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

Graves' disease.

Marfan syndrome.

Muscular dystrophy.

Scoliosis.

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Complications

Potential complications of mitral valve prolapse may include:

Mitral valve regurgitation. The mitral valve flaps don't close tightly. Blood flows backward when the valve is closed, making it harder for the heart to work properly. Being male or having high blood pressure increases the risk of mitral valve regurgitation.

Heart rhythm problems (arrhythmias). Irregular heartbeats may occur if mitral valve prolapse leads to severe regurgitation and swelling of the upper left heart chamber (atrium).

Prevention

There’s no specific way to prevent mitral valve prolapse. But you can reduce your risk of acquired heart valve disease (valve problems that come up as you get older). Some tips include:

Build physical activity and planned exercise into your daily routine. Be sure to check with your provider about any exercise limitations.

Quit smoking and using tobacco products.

Follow a heart-healthy eating plan.

Keep a healthy weight.

Manage conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes. Take medications as prescribed.

Manage stress however feels best to you. This could include yoga, taking deep breaths and talking with others, among other methods.