Division of Cardiology

The Value of Valve Repair

Daniel M. Spevack, M.D.
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine (Cardiology)
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Director of Noninvasive Cardiology
Montefiore Medical Center

When the heart’s left ventricle (pumping chamber) enlarges after a heart attack, the mitral valve leading to it from the atrium (holding chamber) may no longer close tightly. Blood can leak backward, forcing the heart to pump harder and enlarging the heart further.

Surgery to correct this “mitral regurgitation” can help the heart pump more efficiently. But until now there’s been no proof of positive and lasting effects on the left ventricle.

Dr. Spevack, senior author of a study in a 2012 issue of Medical Science Monitor, and his colleagues measured the left ventricle after surgery and found that, over time, it stopped enlarging—confirmation that the surgery helps the heart. 

cardiovascular newsletter cover This article originally appeared in the Summer/Fall issue of the Wilf Family Cardiovascular Research Institute Newsletter.

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