A heart valve surgeryis used as a surgical treatment for the heart valve disease. It is usually performed on the mitral valve but might also be used for aortic, tricuspid and pulmonic valves. It is used in cases where a heart valve repair surgery won’t cure the patient. Heart valve surgeries might be performed for replacement of valve or its repair, which happens when your heart can be repaired and doesn’t need replacement.
Our heart valves have a flaps that open and close during each heartbeat. A heart valve surgery or a heart valve repair surgery is performed when the valves aren’t able to close properly anymore. Depending on the severity of the case, you might be required to go through a repair surgery or a minimally invasive heart surgery, and in some cases a traditional or open heart valve surgery. You treatment would depend on various factors ranging from your health to your age.
Days before the surgery, you might be asked to get admitted at the hospital. The doctors will use this time to explain you the risks of the surgery, educate you about the surgical procedure, and also provide you with instructions for recovery.
Before the surgery several tests like an electrocardiogram and various blood tests might be performed on you. Right before the operation takes place, you might also be asked to wash yourself with an antiseptic. A hospital staff will cut hear from over your chest and abdomen.
There are two types of heart valve surgery: traditional heart valve surgery and minimally invasive heart valve surgery. The former involves a process where the surgeon cuts into your breastbone as you sleep due to anaesthesia. The surgeon then replaces the affected valve. In the latter, the surgeon will make small incisions in the right side of your chest. Using a transesophageal echo, your heart valves will be checked before and after the surgery. A minimally invasive surgery means less recovery time and less blood loss.
It usually takes 4 to 8 weeks for a patient to require after the surgery. Although the recovery time might be lower in minimally invasive surgeries. You will be asked to exercise and practice basic care. Following the heart valve surgery, you will have to visit the doctor for a check'up within 6 to 8 weeks.