Valve Repair Surgery

Why is the doctor performing this surgery?

To repair a poorly functioning heart valve. Properly functioning heart valves are essential to direct the flow of the blood thru the heart, and to maintain a normal workload for the heart. The most common heart valve surgically repaired is the mitral valve. The tricuspid and aortic valves may also be repaired.

What is the surgery?

Valve Repair Surgery is an open-heart procedure to fix a poorly functioning heart valve, often without the need for mechanical or biologic parts. Fused valve leaflets may be separated (called a Commissurotomy); calcium deposits hindering valve function may be removed; pieces of floppy/weak valve leaflets may be removed (called a resection); and holes or tears in valve leaflets may be patched.

Sometimes a mechanical (synthetic/man-made) ring may be necessary to reshape and tighten the valve opening.

Where is the surgery performed?

In the Operating Room (OR), under general anesthesia.

How long does this surgery take?

The length of time surgery takes will depend on the valve being repaired, the repair that must be done, the patient's underlying medical condition, etc, but a good estimate is 2 - 3 hours.