Double Valve Replacement (dvr)

Double Valve ReplacementThere are 4 valves in the heart: the Aortic, Mitral, Tricuspid and the Pulmonary valves. These valves are designed to control the direction of blood flow through the heart. The opening and closing of the heart valves produce the sound of the heartbeat.

Double valve replacement is open-heart surgery that is done while the patient is under general anesthesia. An incision is made through the breast bone (sternum). Tubes are used to re-route the blood away from the heart to a heart-lung bypass machine to keep the blood oxygenated and circulating while the heart is being operated on.

Four valves direct blood to and from the body through the heart: the aortic valve, the pulmonic valve, the tricuspid valve, and the mitral valve. Any of these valves may malfunction because of a birth defect, infection, disease, or trauma. When the malfunction is so severe that it interferes with blood flow, an individual will have heart palpitations, fainting spells, and/or difficulty breathing. These symptoms will progressively worsen and cause death unless the damaged valve is replaced surgically.


Abnormal tricuspid valves usually are not replaced because they do not cause serious symptoms. Mildly or even moderately diseased mitral valves may not need to be replaced because their symptoms are tolerable or they can be treated with such drugs as beta blockers or calcium antagonists, which slow the heart rate. However, a severely diseased mitral valve should be repaired or replaced unless the person is too ill to tolerate the operation because of another condition or illness.

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