Tricuspid valve disease is a health condition that causes malfunctioning of the tricuspid valve in the heart. The tricuspid valve is present at the right side of your heart, between the heart chambers (atrium and ventricle) on the right. It regulates the flow of blood between the atrial and ventricular chambers on the right side of the heart.
This health condition is often present at birth; therefore, it is a congenital condition. However, it can also develop later in life.
What is Tricuspid Valve Disease?
The human heart has valves that regulate blood flow in and out of the heart chambers. When there is an anomaly in the tricuspid valve located on the right side of your heart, this health condition is called tricuspid valve disease.
Mild cases of tricuspid valve disease may not need medical intervention. However, if you or your baby have a severe condition of tricuspid valve disease, you need to consult a cardiologist.
There are certain types of tricuspid valve diseases:
- Tricuspid Valve Regurgitation: It occurs when the opening and closing function of the tricuspid valve is impaired.
- Tricuspid Atresia: This is a congenital health condition that involves an absence of a tricuspid valve.
- Tricuspid Valve Stenosis: This health condition is marked by a narrow opening in the tricuspid valve that may lead to problems related to blood flow.
Ebstein Anomaly: It is a congenital heart defect wherein a malformed tricuspid valve sits lower than the normal in the right ventricle. This may cause blood to flow back into your right atrium (tricuspid valve regurgitation).
What are the Signs of Tricuspid Valve Disease?
If you have tricuspid valve disease, you may or may not experience any signs and symptoms. However, here is a list of common signs of tricuspid valve disease:
- Irregularity in heart rhythm
- Low capacity to exercise
- Feeling of pulse in the neck
- Shortness of breath
- Swollen legs or feet
- Enlarged liver
When to See a Doctor?
If you experience prolonged fatigue or other signs such as swelling in the body, get in touch with a cardiologist to rule out any possibility of tricuspid valve disease.
Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment
What are the Causes of Tricuspid Valve Disease?
The development of tricuspid valve disease may have several causes.
- Ebstein’s Anomaly: It is a rare health condition that may lead to backward flow of blood. It is usually present at the time of birth. It may often go undetected till you reach adolescence.
- Infective carditis: If the lining of your heart is infected, it may damage the tricuspid valve and lead to its malfunctioning.
- Severe chest trauma: Severe trauma or accident may cause damage to your tricuspid valve.
- Congenital heart defects: Congenital heart defects in the newborn are common causes of malfunctioning of the tricuspid valve.
- Dilated ventricles: Dilation of the right ventricles may cause changes at the base of your tricuspid valve. Dilation of ventricles commonly results in tricuspid valve regurgitation.
- Rheumatic fever: Untreated strep throat may lead to rheumatic fever. Rheumatic fever usually affects the joints and the heart. Consequently, this fever can cause tricuspid valve-related issues later in life.
What are the Treatment Options Available for Tricuspid Valve Disease?
The treatment option for tricuspid valve infection involves surgical and preventive approaches.
If you suffer from severe tricuspid valve disease, the doctor may recommend a tricuspid valve replacement or repair surgery. The surgery options often depend upon the severity of your symptoms. When valve disease is serious, it becomes essential to repair or replace the unhealthy valve. The preferred surgical approach for tricuspid regurgitation is tricuspid valve repair using an annuloplasty ring. This can be done for primary tricuspid disease or for combined cases with other valve procedure (mitral, aortic).
When the valve can’t be repaired, a valve replacement procedure will be performed. Your physician may prescribe medicines to treat the symptoms. These medicines may include medications to treat heart failure or drysicianeugs to control irregular heart rhythms.
If you have mild symptoms of tricuspid valve disease, you may not need any specific course of treatment. Once the doctor assesses your case, they may suggest a suitable treatment depending upon your signs and underlying health conditions.
Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment
What Lifestyle Changes can Benefit Tricuspid Valve Disease?
To keep your heart healthy, for an improved quality of life, you must make certain lifestyle changes:
- Physical activity: Exercise regularly to better the health of your heart. Certain exercises are known to strengthen cardiac muscles. Also, staying active by regularly exercising can help deal with fatigue and lack of energy.
- Follow a healthy diet: Avoid the use of saturated fats, oils in your diet. Include a variety of whole grains, fibers, vegetables to keep your heart healthy.
- Care during dental treatment: If you have had tricuspid valve replacement surgery done, the doctor may recommend a dose of antibiotics before underlying major dental work to avoid infection.
- Be cautious of your health: Regular monitoring of your signs and symptoms can help avoid complications associated with the malfunctioning tricuspid valve.
- Take blood-thinners under medical supervision: You may experience blood clots post-surgery for which, your doctor may prescribe blood thinners for a limited period.
Your heart is a significant organ that plays a crucial role in blood circulation. The tricuspid valve in the heart is a major regulator of blood flow between the chambers on the right side of the heart. A defect — be it congenital or infective — in this valve can thus affect the overall functioning of the heart.
The symptoms of tricuspid valve disease often go unnoticed. So, if you are experiencing symptoms such as fatigue, breathlessness, and swelling, you should immediately consult a doctor to get a proper diagnosis. Malfunctioning of the tricuspid valve can be managed with the right treatment and regular monitoring.
- Does a mild case of malfunctioning tricuspid valve need surgical treatment?
No. If you experience a very mild form of tricuspid valve disease, you may not need any specific treatment. However, it is best to regularly monitor your symptoms.
- Can you get a stroke if you have tricuspid valve disease?
In case of untreated and severe conditions, you may experience a stroke.
- What sort of risks are associated with tricuspid valve surgery?
Infection, blood clots, and stroke are some of the possible risks involved in tricuspid valve surgery.