The heart contains 4 valves. These valves open and close each time the heart beats, allowing blood to flow in and out of the heart, then to the rest of the body. Sometimes, the valve openings can become blocked or leaky, causing unstable oxygen and blood flow issues to arise. The 2 valves most susceptible to failure are the aortic and mitral valves. Depending on the severity, a less-invasive valve repair procedure can remedy the blood flow issue, while other, more severe cases require a more extensive replacement procedure that involves open heart surgery and a donor or synthetic valve to replace the faulty one. Our team of skilled surgeons at Arizona Premier Surgery are qualified to assess each patient's medical condition and perform the appropriate valve replacements and repairs required, expediting their recovery and restoring the blood flow back to the heart.
"Dr. Albert Amini is a total rockstar. He's the most impressive surgeon I've ever interacted with, hands down. Not only does he have a tremendous surgical record, he listens attentively and has the rare gift of being able to condense complex information into explanations that even we laypeople can digest.He was carefully deliberate and considerate even for my simple, routine surgery (appendectomy), so I cannot recommend him highly enough, if you or a loved one is ever in a complicated scenario requiring a thoughtful doctor who will be attentive and willing to take time to really *hear* you and establish a plan of action WITH you. The peace of mind he will give you will be well worth the trip to Arizona!"- T.B. / Yelp / Jan 05, 2018
"Dr. Amini is GREAT. I was in California last year on vacation and my Gallbladder blew. I had to get off Catalina Island and was sent to UCI Irvine where they did surgery New Years Eve. The surgeon told me after that she could not do it laparoscopically because of adhesions and so it was an open surgery. Even then she said she could only take part of the gallbladder as it was too infected to do much else. I had to have an ERCP the next day due to a bile leak they had to put a stent in. I kept having troubles after I was released and sent back home. My husband found Dr Amini because of his specialty. I was told in California they took most of the gallbladder but every CT scan that was done here showed a full gallbladder. I don't think they did anything but drain it. Dr. Amini took my case was very patient with me and when he did the surgery, he did it laparoscopically with 3 small incisions. He took down all the adhesions from my previous messed up surgery with Mayo and now UCI. Then he removed the gallbladder totally. He said i was 90% in tact. I am so happy surgery was a complete success and I am 2 weeks post op and I feel great have been walking 5 miles a day and ready to start playing tennis. You would be lucky to have a surgeon like Dr. Amini. He knows his stuff!!"- S.M. / Yelp / Dec 14, 2017
"This review is for Dr. Bianca Vazquez. I would give a million stars if that were an option! She is the endocrinology specialist and I just had my follow-up with her after she removed my thryroid 16 days ago. First of all, she is an incredibly talented and skilled surgeon. My steri-strips were removed today and my scarring is so minimal it's almost shocking that the procedure was done 16 days ago! My favorite thing about her is her bedside manner. She was so good about taking plenty of time to explain EVERYTHING including different options for treatment, post care, follow up and even diet advice! She's the epitome of the "new school" of doctors which emphasizes the importance of patients' input and participation in their own care. It's like you make the decisions together. The Scottsdale office is beautiful and Dr. Vazquez and the staff provide a warm and welcoming environment. I just love how personable she is and I feel like I not only found an incredibly knowledgeable and skilled surgeon but that I have made a new friend. Look no further if you need endocrinology surgery! She's the BEST!!!"- Z.K. / Yelp / Dec 07, 2017
"I was referred to Dr Vazquez by my Endocrinologist because of the fast growing nodules on my thyroid. Knowing she worked at Mayo Clinic, I had a really good feeling going in. We first met her at the consultation & were immediately impressed with the thorough information she gave us. She made sure we did not have any further questions regarding surgery before letting us go. It was really nice to have an option as to where the surgery would take place. She came to see me in pre-op right before surgery to let my family know how long to expect the surgery to be & ensure we had no further questions. My scar from surgery is barely visible. So much so, that when I went for post-surgery, her nurse had to do a double take. Not only a terrific surgeon, this lady has drive & thrives to be above & beyond any expectations of her patients. We definitely need more doctors like Dr Vazquez!!! Terrific lady!!!"- N.W. / Google / Dec 04, 2017
"I met Dr. Amini when I was told I had to have my appendix removed that same night in the ER when I went in for abdominal pain. His bed side manner, patience and explaining the whole surgery and answering all questions my mom and I had was beyond excellent. My surgery went very well with no complications. He is extremely thorough. After seeing him in his office after surgery my opinion of him still stands. He's an amazing surgeon, very kind, assuring, compassionate and his patient care is outstanding. I would highly recommend him to anyone in need! Thank you Dr. Amini for taking such great care of me!"- A.M. / Google / Nov 20, 2017
Common Reasons for Surgery
Stenosis is a condition that refers to the narrowing of a heart valve. When this occurs, the opening to the heart becomes rigid and shrinks, making it more difficult for the heart to do its job. This causes stress to be placed on the heart and for it to pump harder, leading to weakened blood flow throughout the body.
Abnormal Heart Murmur
An abnormal heart murmur is simply a valve that is not functioning normally, causing an abnormal rhythm or sound when the heart beats. Abnormal heart murmurs can be attributed to certain diseases, such as endocarditis and rheumatic fever. It can also be caused by foreign materials that calcify and interrupt the blood flow.
Most commonly occurring in the mitral valve, a prolapse happens when the two openings to the mitral valve do not close normally, causing it to prolapse (protrude) into the left atrium. The result is a collapsed valve opening that can allow blood to leak or flow back into the heart when it contracts, causing a murmur.
Regurgitation means that blood flow is being leaked or recycled backward into the valve from which it came instead of flowing out into the body. This causes the heart to pump twice as hard to supply the necessary oxygen to the body.
About Valve Repair/Replacement
Depending on the severity of the patient's condition, and upon recommendations from a consulting surgeon, either a heart valve repair or replacement procedure will be administered. When a patient undergoes a repair of the aortic or mitral valve, a couple of options will be available. A repair requires a less-invasive procedure, involving minor incisions to be made along the chest. One of the most common options is a valvuloplasty, which involves a balloon to be attached to a catheter and guided into the narrowed or hardened valve. The balloon is then expanded and the valve returns to its normal shape. Another option is an annuloplasty, which involves a similar process of inserting a ring around the opening of one of the valves to reinforce and strengthen the faulty opening.
However, if the damage to the valve is too severe, then a replacement procedure is required, which involves the opening of the chest to expose the heart and valves, so the damaged valve can be replaced. The replacement valve can be a mechanical device, tissue from a donor, or one of your healthy valves that is moved into the place of the abnormal valve. After the valve is replaced or repaired, the surgeon will then close the incision and the heart will begin beating at a normal rhythm as normal blood flow will be restored. This procedure is performed as an inpatient surgery, lasting between 2 – 4 hours
What to Expect
A patient receiving a valve replacement or repair can expect to remain in the hospital for about a week following the procedure. After careful monitoring and ensuring that the healing process is successful, 3 – 4 weeks of at-home recovery will take place before the patient can proceed with their normal activities. A follow up appointment will be required 4 – 6 weeks after the procedure.
Plan Your Procedure
- Recovery Time
- 3 - 4 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 2 - 4 Hours
- Post-op Follow-up
- 4 - 6 Weeks
- Procedure Recovery Location
Know Your Options
Our team of knowledgeable surgeons are highly-qualified to assess your condition and make the appropriate surgical recommendations tailored to your needs. Arizona Premier Surgery offers a wide range of options to treat aortic and mitral valve complications, giving each patient the best possible treatment method for a healthy life.