November 1997

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Kathi Ovnic, 404/727-9371 -

ORLANDO -- "Results of mitral valve repair are gratifying, offering the potential for long-term excellent results," reports Emory University cardiothoracic surgeon Joseph M. Craver, M.D., at the American Heart Association 70th Scientific Sessions.

He and his Emory colleagues evaluated the outcome of 660 patients who underwent surgery between 1980-96 to repair a defective mitral valve. Fewer than two percent of patients required mitral replacement one year after surgery and fewer than eight percent needed repeat surgery five years out.

When divided into two distinct groups -- 496 patients who did not need coronary artery bypass graft (the "No-CABG" group) and 164 patients who did (the "CABG" group) -- the team reports a one-year survival of 94 percent and five-year survival of 87 percent of No-CABG patients, and a one-year survival of 79 percent and five-year survival of 60 percent of CABG patients.

Compared with CABG patients, the No-CABG subjects were significantly younger (average 52 versus 66 years of age), more likely female (63 versus 32 percent), much less likely to have had a heart attack (2.2 versus 39 percent), less likely to have high blood pressure (24 versus 50 percent), less likely to have Class 3-4 angina (13 versus 45 percent), less likely to have heart failure (42 versus 56 percent) and more likely to survive the hospital stay (2.7 versus 11 percent).

The mitral valve separates the heart's upper left chamber (atrium) from lower left chamber (ventricle). In mitral insufficiency or mitral stenosis, blood may leak from one chamber of the heart to another.

The exertion needed by the left side of the heart to clear the regurgitated blood increases one's risk of heart failure.

Mitral valve prolapse is a similar condition and quite common among young women -- though it is almost always considered benign and rarely requires treatment.


Short and Long Term Outcome after Mitral Valve Repair (Abstract 4100)

Poster presentation: 1:30 p.m., Nov. 12, 1997

Joseph M. Craver, Ellis L. Jones, Robert A. Guyton, Emory University

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Copyright ©Emory University, 1997. All Rights Reserved.
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