Stenosis means narrowing of an opening, such as a heart valve. Stenosis of the mitral valve limits the forward flow of blood from the left atrium to the left ventricle. This may cause a back-up of blood and fluid in the lungs. Mitral stenosis most commonly develops many years after a person has had rheumatic fever, although many patients diagnosed with mitral stenosis don't recall ever having the illness.
Causes: Diagnosed with mitral stenosis don’t recall ever having the illness. During rheumatic fever, the valve becomes Mitral stenosis most commonly develops many years after a person has had rheumatic fever, although many patients inflamed. Over time, the leaflets of the inflamed valve stick together and become scarred, rigid and thickened, limiting its ability to open completely.
Symptoms: Many of the symptoms of mitral stenosis, such as shortness of breath and fatigue, result from a back-up of blood in the lungs. Other symptoms of mitral stenosis may include quick weight gain; weakness; dizziness; swelling in the ankles, feet and/or abdomen (edema); and/or heart palpitations (irregular heartbeat).
Treatment: A balloon valvotomy is the preferred treatment for mitral valve stenosis. It is a procedure that widens the mitral valve so that blood flows more easily through the heart. A balloon valvotomy is a minimally invasive procedure. A doctor uses a thin flexible tube (catheter) that is inserted through an artery in the groin or arm and threaded into the heart. When the tube reaches the narrowed mitral valve, a balloon device located on the tip of the catheter is quickly inflated. The narrowed or fused mitral valve leaflets are separated and stretched open as the balloon presses against them. This process increases the size of the mitral valve opening and allows more blood to flow from the left atrium into the left ventricle.
Statistics: we studied mitral valves from 94 patients with HCM and 45 normal control subjects. The area of the mitral leaflets was increased in patients with HCM compared with control subjects (12.9 +/- 3.7 versus 8.7 +/- 2.0 cm2; p less than 0.001). For the overall group of patients, this increase was largely caused by an increase in anterior leaflet length (2.2 +/- 0.5 cm for HCM versus 1.8 +/- 0.3 cm for control subjects; p less than 0.001), because circumference did not differ between the two groups. Mitral leaflet area was increased (greater than or equal to 12.0 cm2) in 55 (58%) of the 94 valves. In 12 of these 55 valves, both the anterior and posterior leaflets were enlarged; the other 43 valves had asymmetrical or segmental enlargement of either the anterior leaflet (36 patients) or a portion of posterior leaflet (seven patients). In addition, nine patients had a congenital malformation of the mitral apparatus in which one or both papillary muscles inserted directly into anterior mitral leaflet (mitral valve area was normal in seven of the nine).