Repair versus replacement:
Repair of the heart valve usually is the preferred and more common type of surgery for MVP.
When the mitral valve is seriously damaged, heart valve replacement may be recommended. Examples of serious damage or complicated conditions that might lead to mitral valve replacement include:
- Extensive ballooning of the mitral valve (rather than a single flap that puffs up).
- Severe hardening (calcification) of the valve.
- Prolapse (bulging) of the valve at an unusual location.
- Damage to the valve from infection (endocarditis).
The decision regarding whether to repair or replace a valve is based on many things, including the person's general health, the condition of the damaged valve, the presence of other health conditions and the expected benefits of surgery. In some cases, the decision clearly may be in favor of repair or in favor of replacement.
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