Complex Valve Surgery and Repair
One of the widely used cardiac surgeries today, Mitral valve repair is more complex than a valve replacement procedure. However, it is safer and long lasting.
Mitral valve repair is a cardiac surgery procedure performed by cardiac surgeons to treat stenosis (narrowing) or regurgitation (leakage) of the mitral valve. The mitral valve is the "inflow valve" for the left side of the heart. Blood flows from the lungs, where it picks up oxygen, through the pulmonary veins, to the left atrium of the heart. After the left atrium fills with blood, the mitral valve allows blood to flow from the left atrium into the heart's main pumping chamber called the left ventricle. It then closes to keep blood from leaking back into the left atrium or lungs when the ventricle contracts (squeezes) to push blood out to the body. It has two flaps, or leaflets.
Procedures on the mitral valve usually require a median sternotomy, but advances in non-invasive methods (such as keyhole surgery) allow surgery without a sternotomy and with lesser pain and minimal scar marks. The minimally invasive approach does not involve cutting the breastbone, but instead uses multiple incisions in the side of the chest and the leg. The minimally invasive approach can produce a less prominent scar, is beneficial for very obese patients and may allow the patient to return to their normal activity sooner than a sternotomy.