Mitral valve prolapse: Can it thicken the aorta?

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Mitral valve prolapse: Can it thicken the aorta?

Question

Can mitral valve prolapse cause the aorta to thicken?

Jane
Ohio

Answer

Mitral valve prolapse doesn't cause the aorta to thicken. The aorta is the large blood vessel that branches off the heart to deliver oxygen-rich blood to the body. In some cases, however, people who have mitral valve prolapse may have problems with their aorta that are unrelated to mitral valve prolapse. This is especially likely if a person has Marfan syndrome or another connective tissue disorder.

Mitral valve prolapse is a common heart disorder that occurs when the valve between the heart's left upper chamber (left atrium) and the left lower chamber (left ventricle) doesn't close properly. Mitral valve prolapse is often harmless. Most people who have mitral valve prolapse don't require treatment. If leakage is severe, however, the mitral valve may need to be repaired or replaced.

Last Updated: 2010-10-28
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