Medical Management of Heart Valve Disease

The Comprehensive Heart Valve Repair Program is a recognized leader in the study and treatment of complex valve disease and offers patients a full host of medical management options for their condition. Patients are thoroughly evaluated based upon the type and severity of their valve disease to determine their candidacy for this approach. At the Heart Valve Repair Program, specialists typically employ medical management as a means of relieving symptoms associated with valve diseases, such as abnormal heart rhythms or high blood pressure. Medical management is not a substitute for patients who require valve surgery. Rather, medical management is a means of:

  • Stabilizing a patient's condition until the time of valve surgery
  • Treating functional abnormalities
  • Lowering the risk of valve infection (endocarditis) and rheumatic fever
  • Improving quality of life and survival for patients who are at high risk for surgery

Patients under medical management are closely monitored by Heart Valve Repair Program physicians to ensure that their condition remains stable and to establish the appropriate time for surgery, when indicated.

Medications Offered by the Valve Repair Program

Medications are used to treat the symptoms associated with a patient's valve condition and not the disease itself. Associated conditions that can be treated with medications may include high blood pressure, heart failure or irregular heart rhythm. Heart Valve Repair Program physicians may also suggest modifications to a patient's diet or exercise routine to improve their outcomes.

Medications are commonly used to:

  • Remove extra fluid from the tissue and bloodstream and lessen symptoms of heart failure
  • Control the heart's rhythm
  • Encourage blood to flow in a forward direction rather than backward through a leaky valve
  • Treat high blood pressure
  • Reduce the strain on the heart by helping it beat slower and less forcefully
  • Control the clotting time of blood