The primary function of the heart is to pump blood to vital organs. For the blood to pass through the heart, it has to go through narrow openings called valves. The problem arises when these valves do not work correctly, and as a result, not enough blood will pass through. People may have issues with their valve function for a long time without recognizing it, and the reason for that is that valve malfunction occurs slowly and gradually. Generally, people who are susceptible to having valve problems exhibit the following symptoms:
Patients may have breathing problems when they lie down or engage in strenuous activity.
Patients may show discomfort, including pain, tightness, or numbness in your chest, neck, back, or arms.
A feeling of dizziness and lightheaded.
Patients may feel unexpected tiredness during activity.
What causes the valves to malfunction?
So far, the reason why people may develop valve problems is not accurately known; however, men and women, irrespective of their age, can develop this debilitating condition. Some of the common causes of developing valve problems are mentioned below:
Scar tissue and calcium will build up around the valve.
Infection and other diseases.
High blood pressure.
coronary artery disease.
What happens when the valves do not work correctly?
Problems that may occur with valves is that they may not open as wide as they should be or close tightly enough. In whichever case, the blood cannot adequately reach the body, and thus the heart exhausts itself by working harder to pump the blood. When the heart is working abnormally hard, it may lead to heart failure. Basically, there are two types of problems associated with valves:
Stenosis: This is a condition that can occur with the function of the valve when it will not open all the way. The main reason for this type of problem is that leaflets are stuck together, or they become too stiff. In this situation, the blood has to pass through a small opening which again leads to pumping the blood harder.
Regurgitation: The condition occurs when the valve does not close as tightly as possible. The valve in this condition is described as being leaky because leaflets are fit together poorly. The critical thing that happens here is that the blood will flow backward or leak into the valve which the heart has to move it once again into the organs.
How is heart valve replacement surgery performed?
Once the doctor determines the type of valve problems that patients are suffering from, some preparation will be arranged to help with the surgery to go smoothly.
Things to do before the surgery
in order to assess the condition of your heart, some tests are necessary to be administered, including the following:
Electrocardiogram (ECG): This is a test that checks how the heart is functioning by measuring the electrical activity of the heart.
Chest x-ray: This imaging test will examine the heart, lungs, airways, blood vessels.
Blood and urine tests: These tests will check kidney problems, blood sugar levels, and the blood’s ability to clot.
In addition, some weeks before the surgery, the doctor recommends patients to pay attention to the following points:
Patients should give doctors a list of all the medication that they use.
Patients should stop smoking before and after surgery.
A family member should accompany the patient.
The surgeon makes a small incision at the center of the chest to reach the heart. After that, the breastbone is separated to replace the valve with a mechanical valve or human heart tissue (biological tissue valve). When the mechanical valve replacement is administered, the patient needs to take medication to prevent blood clots.
Replacement with a Mechanical Valve
Mechanical valves are made of metal or hard carbon. Although they tend to last long, the formation of blood clots is prevalent in this type of valve replacement.
Replacement with a Tissue Valve
In some cases, the tissue valve can come from animals. The benefit of these valve replacement is that blood clots will rarely happen.
After the surgery
Patients should keep in mind that full recovery after heart valve replacement surgery takes time, and it is recommended that the below instructions should be followed for full fast recovery:
Waking is a simple but yet effective way to boost the heath.
Attending follow-ups appointments is essential for further evaluation.
Patients should make healthy changes to their diet and lifestyle.
Heart Valve Replacement Surgery in Iran
There is no question that Iran is among some of the reputable countries that perform various types of heart surgeries. Each year, a substantial number of vital and challenging heart operations are performed including valve replacement surgery. In recent years, Iran has been benefiting from some of the advanced and efficient techniques in treating heart diseases. From the past ten years, the Iranian Heart Association has been a proud member of the European Society of Cardiology, which has made Iran a magnet in providing the most innovative treatments that are parallel to other nations. Undergoing valve replacement in Iran or other cardiovascular treatments bring unwanted stress to many patinas, irrespective of their nationalities. As a result, some of our renowned heart surgeons have some simple but beneficial recommendations for patients before undergoing these kinds of procedures: 1. fasting will become essential, preferably for 8 hours before the surgery, 2. quit smoking and drinking at least for two weeks, 3. maintaining a healthy diet and exercising whenever you can.
Heart Valve Replacement Surgery at Medova
As one of the well-known and prestigious health tourism that arranges, oversee, and evaluate all medical trips, Medova has gained a reliable and trustworthy reputation in offering the most efficient medical treatments. In addition, the price of most of the operations which will be arranged by Medova is super affordable, given the quality of treatment that patients receive. Once you appoint a free online consultation with one of our health care professionals, thorough instructions will be given according to the type of surgery and the risk that may be involved. After reaching a definite decision about the kind of treatment you would like to take, Medova team will arrange the rest of your treatment process like visiting the doctor, taking medical tests, and mainly assist you for undergoing the surgery. Besides, you will never worry about your accommodation, transportation, and communicating since our translator/interpreter will help you in knowing precisely each step toward your desired goal.