Our heart beats about 100,000 times in a single day! An impressive pace that requires a fool proof machine in which one part is strategic: the heart valve.
1. What role do you believe our four heart valves play?
The sound of your heartbeat is not due to cardiac contractions, but to the opening and closing of small doors; your heart valves.
2. Would you be able to recognize the sound of the heart of a patient with a damaged heart valve?TAKE THE TEST!
So? Can you hear a difference? Which of the two hearts do you think has a damaged valve?
When these valves do not work properly, we talk about heart valve disease.
3. Had you ever heard about heart valve disease?
4. Do you think heart valve disease can be life threatening??
Indeed, heart valve disease can be life threatening if not diagnosed promptly! However, several treatment options exist.
13% of patients over 75 are affected! Heart valve disease can be life threatening if not diagnosed and treated promptly
5. Which instrument do you think your general practitioner uses to detect a damaged heart valve ?
6. If you are over 65, how often should a doctor listen to your heart with a stethoscope?
The correct answers are in green, the bad ones in red, your answers in bold
The heart is a beating muscle that pumps blood through the body. Inside the heart, four valves open and close in a precise sequence to ensure the flow of blood in the right direction.
Two heart valves control blood flow between the upper chambers of the heart (the atrium) and the lower chambers (ventricles). The other two valves control blood flow between the ventricles, lungs and the body. The opening and closing of these four valves creates two distinct "cardiac sounds", called heartbeats.
Some valves in the heart can disrupt blood flow by not opening sufficiently or closing properly. Heart valve disease can be congenital, meaning that a person can contract it at birth, or the disease can develop later in life due to damage from age-related calcification, other cardiovascular diseases and conditions, or infection. About 2% of the population suffers from heart valve disease in Western countries. This prevalence increases with age, reaching 13% of people aged 75 and over.
Several treatment options exist to treat heart valve diseasex
While you would need your doctor to diagnose heart valve disease, it is good be aware of some common symptoms of the disease: :
16-20th September 2019
The European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week has been initiated by the Global Heart Valve Disease Patient Council in order to address the fact that far too many people suffering from heart valve disease are not being diagnosed and treated early enough. The Global Heart Valve Disease Patient Council is part of the Global Heart Hub, the Alliance of Heart Patient Organisations.
The aim of the European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week is to ensure that more people are aware of the importance of having their heart tested for heart valve disease, which can often be detected through a simple stethoscope check. With increased awareness we hope to see many more heart valve disease patients get the treatment they need and to go on living full and happy lives.
Heart valve disease is caused by either wear, disease or damage of one or more of the heart’s valves, affecting the flow of blood through the heart. This can cause symptoms such as breathlessness, chest pain, dizziness and fainting. However, if it is diagnosed and treated early, patients can return to a good quality of life.
One out of eight people over the age of 75 suffers from moderate to severe heart valve disease. Due to the increase of ageing populations across Europe the number of people affected by heart valve disease will keep growing. Studies show that people with serious aortic stenosis, the most common type of heart valve disease in the elderly, have only a 50% chance of surviving for two years with the disease if they are not being treated.
June 2, 2019
The Alliance, made up of patient organisations from France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Ireland and the UK, chose the third week of September as the date for the European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week with events taking place at each of the represented Alliance countries. “It has been a pleasure hosting the meeting for the… Read more »
June 2, 2019
The members of the Alliance made up of patient organisations from France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Ireland and the UK will now join forces with the Global Heart Hub Patient Council for Heart Disease and will be chaired by Wil Woan, Chief Executive of Heart Valve Voice. The Global Heart Hub is an alliance of… Read more »