Cardiac Surgery - Valve Replacement

Cardiac surgery refers to any surgical proceedings undertaken to repair heart-related disorders. Surgery of valve replacement is meant for treating disorders related to the heart valve. The disease may involve one or more of the four heart valves where they do not work correctly. The primary function of the heart valve is to maintain blood flow in the appropriate direction through the heart. In valve replacement surgery, our surgeons at Max Hospital, India replace or repair the faulty heart valves surgically, including open-heart surgery or minimally invasive heart surgery.

Symptoms

Valve replacement surgery or treatment depends upon the type of effect and the severity of the heart valve disease. Valve replacement or repair is done in extreme cases. Some of the symptoms of heart valve disease are:
  1. Uncommon or strange sound in the heart when a doctor listens to the heartbeat with a stethoscope
  2. Shortness of breath, specifically during activity or while lying down
  3. Irregular heartbeat
  4. Swelling of your ankles and feet
  5. Fatigue
  6. Fainting
  7. Dizziness

Medical Test or Diagnosis

When a patient is detected with heart valve disorders, the doctor often suggests for the following medical tests:
  1. Echocardiography
  2. Chest X-ray
  3. Electrocardiogram
  4. Cardiac MRI
  5. Cardiac Catheterization
  6. Exercise Tests or Stress Tests

Pre-Surgery Precautions and Recovery

Before admitting to the hospital, doctors prescribe specific instructions to patients to be followed at home and also discuss the surgery with the patient. Specific precautionary measures are:
  1. Advising on whether and when to take regular medications before surgery
  2. Advising on probable allergies to certain medications
  3. When to stop eating or drinking before surgery  
  4. Doctors would advise the patient to bring several required items to the hospital during admission
As a part of the recovery plan, doctors suggest some heart-healthy lifestyle changes to patients who have undergone heart valve surgery, which are
  1. Eating a heart-healthy diet
  2. Getting regular physical activity
  3. Maintaining a healthy weight
  4. Avoiding tobacco 
  5. Managing stress

Special Approach for Treatment

Heart valve treatment involves surgery that is performed through a small incision within the chest, and this is minimally invasive heart surgery, besides the traditional open-heart surgery.  Also, doctors may use another least-invasive surgical procedure for repairing faulty valves using catheters, long, thin tubes, in the case of some patients. This procedure may involve the use of clips, plugs, or other devices. Valves can be replaced using a catheter procedure. However, practitioners continue to study various catheter procedures for repairing or replacing faulty heart valves.

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