“Mitral valve replacement is a cardiac surgical procedure in which a patient’s diseased mitral valve is replaced by either a mechanical or bioprosthetic valve.
Mitral valve replacement is performed when the valve becomes too tight (mitral valve stenosis) for blood to flow into the left ventricle, or too loose (mitral valve regurgitation) in which case blood can leak back into the left atrium and thereby back into the lung.Mitral valve disease can occur from infection, calcification,[ inherited collagen disease, or other causes. Since a mitral valve replacement is an open heart surgical procedure, it requires placing the patient on cardiopulmonary bypass”, Source: Wikipedia.
Mitral valve has an important function within your heart and your body. The mitral valve controls blood flow from your left atrium into your left ventricle. If you suffer from a severe mitral valve disorder, the cardiac muscle is at risk for permanent damage or failure. That said, it is incredibly important to monitor mitral valve disease and, if needed, surgically treat it with a mitral valve repair or a mitral valve replacement operation.
A mitral valve replacement operation usually takes between three to five hours in which the patient is under general anesthesia. During the procedure, the surgeon will remove the diseased mitral valve and replace it with a mechanical heart valve replacement or a bioprosthetic (tissue) heart valve replacement.
To perform the mitral valve replacement, the surgeon must access and open the heart. There are several different approaches the surgeon can use to replace the mitral valve.
- A median sternotomy in which the sternum is completely broken
- A mini-stenotomy in which part of the sternum is broken
- A thoracotomy (also known as port-access) in which the surgeon accesses the heart through the ribs