Heart Valve Disease

Heart valve problems occur when one or more of the valves in your heart isn’t pumping blood to the rest of your body properly. A variety of conditions can be the cause, but often heart valve disease is hereditary. Some patients may not experience any symptoms until the condition is severe. If this condition runs in your family or you are experiencing symptoms, such as chest pain or shortness of breath, see your doctor for a diagnosis. Treatment will vary depending on your condition and may include surgery to repair or replace the faulty valve. 

What is heart valve disease?

Heart valves open and close with each heartbeat to keep blood flowing into and out of the heart’s four chambers. There are four heart valves that keep blood flowing:

  • Aortic heart valve
  • Mitral valve
  • Tricuspid valve
  • Pulmonary valve

If you have heart valve disease, one or more of the valves isn’t working properly. This condition affects blood flow and can lead to heart failure and other serious problems. The heart specialists at the Allegheny Health Network (AHN) Cardiovascular Institute are nationally renowned for treating all types of heart valve problems. We’re experts at minimally invasive surgeries for patients who can’t undergo open-heart procedures.

Types of heart valve disease

The different types of heart valve disease include:

Symptoms of heart valve problems

Some people with heart valve disease may not experience any symptoms or they may develop them slowly over time. Others may suddenly experience symptoms if the condition is severe.

Physical heart valve disease symptoms can include:

  • Swollen body parts, such as the ankles, feet, or abdomen.
  • Shortness