I am a 38 year old woman with 2 chldren. 6 months ago a murmur was heard for the first time-I ignored it. Recently, I have been having chest pain so my doctor ordered an echo. I have a bicuspid aorta valve with severe regurgitation. My left ventricle is 5.6 cm. I have mild regurgitation in my mitral and tricuspid valves. My efficiency is less than 55%. There is some thickening on the aorta leaflets. I get periodic chest pain (during stress and exercise) and am short of breath during exercise. I woke up gasping for breath 2 nights ago and couldn't get my breath until I started jumping around.
I know that valve replacement surgery is in my future. I just need to know how soon/far away.I am driving myself crazy worrying about this. I don't know if I have months or years before my surgery. Any advice?
Check out www.valvereplacement.com. You'll find a wealth of information and many friendly and helpful folks there. The site specializes in valve repair and replacement information and there are many, many bicuspid patients on the board. Hope it helps.
I think with valve replacement both LV size and your EF will improve a good deal (though your EF is above 50 and that is definitely good). Valve replacement is a science they're really making some excellent advances in. Try to rest easy in that.
I'm not a dr., but I've studied this area alot because my son has a situation similar to yours, only with moderate as opposed to severe regur. Just wanted to say that you should be sure to follow this condition with the appropriate testing carefully. Things tend to progress more quickly when the regurg. is in the severe range. The key is to have the surgery before the heart has reached the point where it will not return to normal after surgery. Another aspect of the biscupid aortic valve picture is the condition of the aorta. A significant percentage of BAV patients have dilated ascending aortas, and a certain percentage of these turn into aneurysms which can dissect. Hopefully your cardiologist has all of this in hand, but it is good to ask the questions. Best of luck to you.
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