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Soon to have tricuspid valve surgery
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Soon to have tricuspid valve surgery


  Quick background:  IHSS diagnosed in 1974 and handled OK by Inderal.  Atrial fibrillation developed in 1994 and drug therapy (corderone, coumadin) had been OK until recently.  Now have leg/feet edema and abdominal swelling.  My cardiologist here did an echo, then a T.E.E. and chest X-rays which he said show my right side of heart is "huge" with the good news that there's no fluid build-up in the lungs..  He then did a catherization on 2/25 and advises my triscupid valve needs surgery.  Backpressure due to poor valve function is highest he's ever seen or heard of.  I'm planning to come to the clinic for valve repair as soon as it can be scheduled.  My question:  How routine is triscupid valve surgery for repair or replacement and is there a chance it will eliminate the A-fib?
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Dear Erhard
Tricuspid valve surgery is much less frequent than aortic or mitral valve surgery. Sometimes valve repair eliminates atrial fibrillation, but you should not count on that happening. Valve repair usually at least makes the atrial fib easier to control. The decision to proceed with tricuspid valve repair must be a careful one. If the right ventricle is very weak, the increased workload from a properly functioning valve can cause it to tire out completely - this would be bad.
Are you sure it is your tricuspid valve? People with IHSS often have leaky mitral valves.
I hope this has been useful. I wish you the best of luck.
If you would like to make an appointment at the Cleveland Clinic Heart Center, please call 1-800-CCF-CARE or inquire online by using the Heart Center website at www.ccf.org/heartcenter.   The Heart Center website contains a directory of the cardiology staff that can be used to select the physician best suited to address your cardiac problem.





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