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How serious is leaky heart valve condition?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
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I am a 78 year old woman and just been diagnosed with a leaky heart valve. Should I be concerned or continue on as usual?
Posted Mon, 24 Mar 2014 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Answered by Dr. Chobufo Ditah 51 minutes later
Brief Answer: Continue as usual unless you've troubling symptoms Detailed Answer: Hi and thank you so much for this query. I am so sorry to hear about that diagnosis of this leaky valve. Leaky valves are not too rare as diagnoses. Not all of them call for immediate action. What guides treatment is whether there are any disturbing symptoms related to this. If there are not worrisome symptoms, there is nothing aggressive that needs to be done medically. Monitoring over time by investigating for symptoms of heart disease related to this is the best treatment option. Can you tell e more about what valve is leaky and what was the degree of the leak? This is just for my curiosity but a leaking valve that does not cause any symptoms is better left alone. I hope this helps and addresses your query fully. Feel free to ask for clarification and more related questions if need be. I wish you well. Thank you for using our services. Dr. Ditah, MD.
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Follow-up: How serious is leaky heart valve condition? 11 hours later
What are thr symptoms of a leaky heart valve, and in your reply you asked which valve. I do not know and does this make a big difference in your answer?
Answered by Dr. Chobufo Ditah 1 hour later
Brief Answer: It does not really makes a great difference Detailed Answer: Hi and thank you for following up with me. It does not really make any huge difference as to what valve is affected. What matters is whether this leak is big enough to cause disturbing symptoms. Most leaky valves are picked up during routine exams. When they cause symptoms, they are mostly symptoms related with heart disease like getting tired easily, difficulties breathing and heart failure in extreme cases. I hope this helps. Thanks. Dr. Ditah, MD.
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