• April 2024

    Mitral valve updates from the Structural Heart Disease Program and Valve Disorders Center

The incidence of mitral valve disease (MVD) is growing as the overall population ages. Mitral valve disease describes the condition when the mitral valve doesn’t work properly, allowing blood to flow back into the left atrium. When this occurs, the heart doesn’t pump enough blood out of the left ventricle to supply the body with oxygen-rich blood. Patients with the condition frequently don’t exhibit any symptoms, while others experience the classic symptoms of heart failure—fatigue, shortness of breath, lightheadedness, weight gain due to fluid retention, increased heart rate and more.

There are three types of MVD: mitral valve stenosis, mitral valve prolapse and mitral valve regurgitation. Stenosis, the narrowing of the valve opening, usually results from scarring from rheumatic fever. Prolapse occurs when the mitral valve flaps or leaflets bulge out instead of closing tightly, which could lead to the third type of MVD—regurgitation—when blood leaks from the valve and flows backward into the left atrium. A variety of heart problems, such as endocarditis, heart attack and rheumatic fever, can cause regurgitation.

The multidisciplinary team of specialists in the Structural Heart Disease Program and the Valve Disorders Center includes interventional cardiologists and cardiac surgeons, imaging specialists, cardiac nurses, and others who are highly trained in percutaneous and open interventions as well as non-surgical medical management to address mitral valve disease.

The team uses advanced imaging, such as echocardiogram, transesophageal echocardiogram, cardiac catheterization and cardiac MRI, to diagnose MVD. If surgical intervention is recommended, many options are available.

Percutaneous interventions include:

  • MitraClip®
  • Transcatheter mitral valve repair (TMVR)
  • Transcatheter Edge-to-Edge Repair
  • Transcatheter mitral valve-in-valve replacement
  • Percutaneous mitral balloon valvuloplasty (PMBV)

Open surgical procedures include:

  • Mitral valve replacement using traditional open-heart surgery techniques

The clinical team will design the best treatment option for your patient with mitral valve disease based on the condition of his or her mitral valve. If surgical intervention is recommended, the team follows the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association guidelines that recommend mitral valve repair first, then mitral valve replacement if repair isn’t the best option.

If you’ve detected a heart murmur in your patient, or if your patient exhibits the classic symptoms of heart failure, referring your patient to the Structural Heart Disease Program and the Valve Disorders Center at Baylor Scott & White Heart and Vascular Hospital – Fort Worth will provide him or her the experience and insight from a high-volume treatment center with specialty trained and experienced specialists practicing in a dedicated program.

500 TAVRS and counting!

The TAVR procedure (also known as TAVI) has become the less invasive way to replace a diseased aortic valve. Since the early years after clinical trials, studies have indicated that it has proven to be effective and often a preferred treatment option for many patients. Begun in October of 2017, the TAVR program has steadily grown to be one of the top TAVR programs in terms of the volume of procedures in Tarrant County.

“Reaching the 500th TAVR in any TAVR program is quite an achievement. We are especially proud of our 500th TAVR as this represents a collaborative approach to developing a program with a multidisciplinary team concerned for the patients in Tarrant County and beyond,” says Scott Ewing, DO, FACOI, FACC, medical director for quality and interventional cardiologist on the medical staff. “We know it is important to remain a high volume quality program committed to the care and improvement of life for aortic stenosis patients.”

Anita Krueger, MD, FACS, medical leader and cardiothoracic surgeon on the medical staff agrees. “The options for TAVR-eligible patients have expanded over the past few years. And, our collaboration among the medical specialties results in a thorough and individualized approach to care for patients needing aortic valve repair or replacement. Cases are reviewed by the collective group. We are proud of the outcomes for our TAVR patients.”

For more information about the Valve Disorders Center or Structural Heart Program, contact 817.825.1374.

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To refer your patient to the Valve Disorders Center, please call 817.825.1374.