Mitraclip Surgery

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Mitraclip minimally invasive mitral valve repair procedure

Mitral regurgitation (or “MR”) is a condition affecting one of the valves in your heart, the mitral valve. The valves in your heart control the flow of blood through the four chambers of your heart. Each heart valve is made up of thin, but strong flaps of tissue. As blood flows through the four chambers of the heart, the valves open and close to ensure that blood flows in the right direction.



The mitral valve is located between your heart’s two left chambers and allows blood to flow forward through your heart during a normal heart- beat. When the mitral valve fails to close completely, blood flows backward in the opposite direction. This backward flow is called mitral regurgitation.

Cause:

There are several causes of mitral regurgitation. These include:


  • Heart disease (such as heart attack), or other conditions that weaken the heart muscle
  • Deterioration of valve tissue
  • Congenital valve abnormalities` (abnormalities present at birth)

Symptom:

Mitral regurgitation places an extra burden on the heart, lungs, and other organs. Some patients may develop an enlarged heart because it has to work harder to pump blood through the body. Eventually, this extra burden can cause other, more serious problems to your heart (such as heart failure) and may result in irregular heartbeats, stroke, and even sudden death.

Some people with mitral valve disease might not experience symptoms for many years. Signs and symptoms of mitral valve regurgitation, which depend on its severity and how quickly the condition develops, can include:

  • Abnormal heart sound (heart murmur) heard through a stethoscope
  • Shortness of breath (dyspnea), especially when you have been very active or when you lie down
  • Cough, especially at night or when lying down
  • Heart palpitations — sensations of a rapid, fluttering heartbeat

Treatment of mitral regurgitation:

It depends on how advanced the condition is and if the condition is getting worse. For mild cases, no treatment may be necessary, but you will need to be monitored regularly by your doctor. For more serious cases, surgery or less-invasive mitral valve repair techniques may be required.

Medical Treatment

When needed, your physician may prescribe medicines that can help to make your symptoms more manageable. While these medicines manage your symptoms caused by mitral regurgitation, they do not treat the defect in the mitral valve itself.


Surgical Treatment

1. Surgery

In some cases, your doctor may recommend surgical treatment to repair or replace the valve. mitral valve repair preserves your own valve, while mitral valve replacement (performed when repair is not possible) replaces your damaged valve with an artificial one. Both valve repair and valve replacement require open-heart surgery.

2. Less-Invasive Valve Repair


In certain cases, your doctor may recommend a less-invasive treatment, such as MitraClip therapy, that does not involve open-heart surgery. Patients who have less-invasive valve repair usually have a shorter recovery time.

Unlike traditional surgery, the MitraClipTM procedure does not require opening the chest. During the procedure, a small implanted clip is attached to the mitral valve by a doctor to help mitral valve close more completely. This helps to restore normal blood flow through patient’s heart.

The MitraClip procedure:

A MitraClip procedure is carried out under a general anaesthesia in catheterization laboratory with assistance of trans-esophageal echocardiography (TEE) and X-rays. During the procedure, doctors access the mitral valve with a thin tube (called a catheter) that is guided through a vein in patient’s leg to reach the heart. The MitraClip is then clipped to the mitral valve and help it close completely. A procedure usually takes three to four hours on average but it can vary due to different anatomies. The length of hospital stay is around one to five days following the procedure.

MitraClip surgery risks and postoperative instructions:

  • The MitraClip is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and has been used with more than 80,000 patients worldwide.
  • Your doctor will discuss how the risks of MitraClip therapy compare with other options that may be available to you.
  • The length of hospital stay is around one to five days following the procedure.
  • The MitraClip device is very small–less than the size of a typical fingertip. You will not be able to feel its presence.
  • Your doctor may also prescribe a blood thinner after you have received the treatment. It is very important to carefully follow your doctor’s instructions regarding any medicines you need to take.
  • Most patients who undergo MitraClip therapy do not need special assistance at home after the procedure, outside of ongoing needs for any unrelated health conditions.