The heart has four valves: the mitral valve, aortic valve, tricuspid valve, and pulmonary valve. These valves open and close like doors and control the flow of blood as it moves throughout the heart and lungs.
A damaged heart valve does not allow the blood to pump properly and can cause the blood to flow in the wrong direction. Heart valve surgery may be recommended to correct narrowing of the heart (stenosis) or if the heart valve is leaking (regurgitation). The most commonly repaired or replaced valves are the mitral and aortic valves.