Mitral Valve Stenosis
Mitral valve stenosis occurs when this valve in the heart does not allow the appropriate amount of blood through. If blood cannot efficiently move through the arteries insufficient blood is supplied to the brain and increased chance of clotting occurs. Some symptoms of aortic valve stenosis is shortness of breath and fatigue. Rheumatic fever is the leading cause of this heart malfunction and generally occurs in childhood, though the effects may not be evident until later in life. Treatment options are available unless the damage is so great that tissue is permanently damaged. Extensive testing is available in order to provide this information.
Symptoms of this disease also include swollen feet or ankles, fluttering heartbeat, frequent respiratory infections, persistent coughing, and even chest pain (though this is rare). Untreated symptoms can lead to congestive heart failure due to the over exertion of the respiratory and cardiac systems of the body. Regular testing for problems such as a heart murmur, lung congestion, arrhythmias, pulmonary hypertension, and blood clots are important to any person who has a family history of cardiac problems. Everyone else should be examined if a problem occurs, but most insurance companies wont cover tests just to be sure. Preventative testing usually only applies to family conditions and those recognized but the surgeon general as overall risks. Seemingly unrelated symptoms include heart murmur, lung congestion, arrhythmias, pulmonary hypertension, and blood clots.
The causes of this disease are all connected to the weakening of the heart chambers. This can be caused by infection, disease, or genetic disposition. One of the major underlying causes of mitral valve stenosis is a childhood disease called rheumatic fever. With the onset of this disease the respiratory and cardiac functions are disabled for life in one way or another. At the very least a person experiences lower immune function due to the damage of these systems. In addition, the mitral valve can individually be damaged due to the intensity of the disease causing a thickening of leaflets or complete fusion of the valve. Either of these actions causes a weakening in the function of the valve thus presenting the threat of disease. Another way aortic valve stenosis is caused is by blood clots and tumors that can block the passageway. Knowing all the details of ones family history prepares a person for possible encounters with this disease. Congenital heart defects raise a person's risk incredibly, but nevertheless the disease is contracted by infection or the onset of other diseases.
Recognizing symptoms of this disease is important to early diagnosis and treatment. Breathlessness is one of the most common signs of mitral valve stenosis. If a person suspects a problem, a doctor can order a variety of diagnostic tests which may show proof of this and other medical problems. However, a thorough interview should be the doctors first step in order to accurately decide whether a problem exists. Listening to the patient's heart, understanding any changes in physical activity, and any changes in how the patient feels regularly will help determine a diagnosis. In addition, the doctor may provide suggestions related to creating a more comfortable environment for the patient while tests are being conducted. The result of these suggestions may be a complete cure, may offer some comfort, or may not even work at all. The success of treatment before a full diagnosis is provided will also offer some clues into what is really going on in the patients body. Based on what the doctor hears in the patients heart and lungs will give him confidence concerning whether or not to pursue further testing.
Additional testing may include an echocardiogram, electrocardiogram (ECG), holter monitoring, chest x-ray, transesophogeal echocardiogram, and cardiac catheterization. An echocardiogram uses sound waves to monitor the heart and determine whether mitral valve stenosis is a possibility. An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a measurement of heart beats as well as heart size to determine any abnormalities. Holter monitoring is a portable recorder of the heart on a continual basis over a long period of time in order to get a more accurate reading. A chest x-ray not only shows visual irregularities in a person's heart, but any fluid that may have built up in the lungs, which may indicate aortic valve stenosis. A transesophageal echocardiogram sends a camera down the esophagus to take a very close look at the heart. Cardiac catheterization requires threading a thin tube full of dye through a blood vessel in the arm or groin, which fills the hearts arteries indicating any blockage and how well the heart functions. "Behold, I will bring it health and cure, and I will cure them, and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace and truth." (Jeremiah 33:6)
Untreated, aortic valve stenosis reduces the blood flow to the rest of the body and can cause congestive heart failure, heart enlargement, atrail fibrillation, blood clots, and lung congestion. Depending on whether the diagnosis is severe or mild mitral valve stenosis will determine the level and type of treatment. In extreme cases, surgery is necessary, but in mild cases regular check ups might be the only recommendation. These check ups can help show the progression of aorta valve stenosis, which will determine the right time for surgery. Some general suggestions of how to improve the quality of life after diagnosis include regular dentist visits, consuming less salt, avoid obesity, avoid caffeine, avoid alcohol, and get regular exercise; basically live a healthy life.
Causes Of Heart PalpitationsMany people wonder what the causes of heart palpitations are after they have experienced heart palpitations symptoms. These are sensations in the chest that feel as if the heart is racing or flip flopping. This problem may be caused because the beating muscle may have skipped a beat or even stopped for a couple of beats. These sensations can be felt in the chest, throat, or neck. This feeling can be accompanied by lightheadedness, uneasiness, or even a loss of consciousness. A normal person has a pulse of about 60 to 100 times per minute. For those who exercise regularly or for people who take certain types of medications, the tempo may be under 55. If the rate, however, goes over 100 times per minute, that is called tachycardia. If it slows to less than 55, that is called brachycardia. If there is an occasional extra beat, that is called extrasystole. Often, when the rhythm is not above 100 or below 55, the problem is not serious. But if the rhythm is irregular, that can signify a serious problem called arrhythmia.
The causes of heart palpitations may be from certain risk factors such as a previous history of cardiac disease, abnormal valve in the muscle, or an electrolyte balance in the body caused by something like low potassium. Some of the reasons the irregularity can occur is because the person is exercising, is experiencing anxiety or fear, or has a fever. Most people have experienced a time when something frightened them and they felt strange feelings in their chest. Other problems that can bring up these abnormalities are ingesting items such as caffeine, nicotine, cocaine, or diet pills. Reading the labels on diet pills is an important step in taking them. Other reasons for heart palpitations symptoms are some types of thyroid disease, anemia, hyperventilation, low levels of oxygen in the blood, and certain proscribed drugs such as asthma drugs, beta blockers, or antiarrhythmics. Other ingested substances such as certain herbals and alcohol can also be the source. Certain illnesses also bring about the same sensations, such as mitral valve prolapse. This is when the valve that separates the left upper chamber called the atrium and the left lower chamber called the ventricle of the cardiac muscle do not work properly.
No matter why the problem persists, the sufferer should seek a doctor's advice. He will determine the causes of heart palpitations by doing an oral examine in which he asks about medications that are taken regularly, diet, and a history of panic attacks. He will probably order an electrocardiogram and some blood tests. If the causes of the heart palpitations cannot be determined through these methods, he may order a coronary monitor to be worn for one for fourteen days to record the rhythm of the cardiac muscle. At this point, it is important for patients to be honest with the medical professionals about lifestyle issues so that they can assess the problem accurately. It doesn't help to cover up any illegal drug use or a habit of taking diet pills because they won't be able to decide if the problem is serious or just nature taking its course. The most common substance to bring about this symptom is using substances that contain caffeine. Some people feel this way when they eat chocolate too. So it's important to make an assessment of these daily habits before conversing with a doctor. It may be good to record the number of cups of coffee drank in one day and when or the amount of chocolate eaten, or the amount of alcohol imbibed. This will help the doctor get to the source of the sickness. He will also most likely ask about any over-the-counter medications taken regularly.
Other tests that may be ordered to find the causes of heart palpitations are an ultrasound of the chest, a treadmill test, or some sophisticated blood tests. These will be done if the doctor decides that the illness in not benign but may be serious. Shortness of breath can also accompany heart palpitations symptoms, causing the sufferer to feel panicky, which can aggravate the crisis. In worse case scenarios, the illness may lead to coronary surgery or other invasive treatments. But not always does shortness of breath along with irregularities in the cardiac rhythm mean a serious diagnosis. But the more the risk factors, the greater the chance that the disease has progressed. If lightheadedness of loss of consciousness has also occurred, an in-depth physical examination is in order. If the person has had a history of cardiac arrest or congestive heart failure, immediate attention to the irregularity needs to be taken. Only a personal physician can do this assessment.
Some people experience premature ventricular complexes PVC, which are extra beats from the ventricle. Some studies have shown that people who have PVCs in the critical care unit may be in greater danger of having cardiac arrest; however, PVCs do occur in healthy people also. Caution is needed for these patients because sometimes using powerful medications to stop the problem can lead to severe coronary disease. Often, PVCs go away by themselves without any treatment. One effective antidote to heart palpitation symptoms is to live in contentment. First Timothy 6:6 states, "But godliness with contentment is great gain." The person who maintains an even temperament and doesn't live with consistent anxiety will experience greater health and well being. Heart palpitations symptoms are not necessarily something to panic about, but something to check out and take care of in a logical way.