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Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral Valve Prolapse - What it is

Mitral valve prolapse occurs when the mitral valve fails to close properly. A normal functioning heart has a mitral valve which closes completely during contraction of the left ventricle, thus preventing blood from flowing back into the left atrium.

However, for people with mitral valve prolapse, one or both of the mitral valve's flaps have extra tissue, which results in them bulging (also known as prolapsing) into the left atrium as the heart contracts.
This bulging may keep the valve from closing tightly, causing blood to leak backward into the left atrium, resulting in a condition called mitral valve regurgitation. This may not be an issue if the amount of blood which leaks backward is small. 

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Symptoms

While mitral valve prolapse may be a life-long disorder for some, many patients never have symptoms. 

Often signs and symptoms occur because blood is flowing backward from the valve. The symptoms for mitral valve prolapse vary, with most cases starting from mild to a gradual increase in symptoms:
  • A racing or irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia)
  • Chest pain which is not due to a heart attack or coronary artery disease
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing, even when lying flat or during physical activity
  • Dizziness 
  • Fatigue

Mitral Valve Prolapse - How to prevent?

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Causes and Risk Factors


While most people with mitral valve prolapse never have problems, complications may occur. These complications can include:

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Diagnosis

Diagnosis typically starts with a physical examination by a doctor, assessing your medical history and routine tests. 

Other tests recommended may include:

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Treatments

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Preparing for surgery

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Post-surgery care

Mitral Valve Prolapse - Other Information

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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