Get answers to your Mitral Valve Surgery questions.
Mitral valve replacement - open; Mitral valve repair - open; Mitral valvuloplasty
Expect to spend 4 to 7 days in the hospital after surgery. You will wake up in the intensive care unit (ICU) and recover there for 1 or 2 days. Two to three tubes will be in your chest to drain fluid from around your heart. They are usually removed 1 to 3 days after surgery.
You may have a flexible tube (catheter) in your bladder to drain urine. You may also have intravenous (IV, in the vein) lines to get fluids. Nurses will closely watch monitors that show information about your vital signs (pulse, temperature, and breathing).
You will be moved to a regular hospital room from the ICU. Your nurses and doctors will continue to monitor your heart and vital signs until you are stable enough to go home. You will receive pain medicine to control pain around your surgical cut.
Your nurse will help you slowly resume some activity. You will be asked to begin a physical therapy program to make your heart and body stronger.
Mechanical heart valves do not fail often. They last from 12 to 20 years. However, blood clots develop on them. If a blood clot forms, you may have a stroke. Bleeding can occur, but this is rare.
Biological valves tend to fail over time. But they have a lower risk of blood clots.
Fullerton DA, Harken AH. Acquired heart disease: valvular. In: Townsend CM, Beauchamp RD, Evers BM, Mattox KL, eds. Sabiston Textbook of Surgery. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2008:chap 62.
Otto CM, Bonow RO. Valvular heart disease. In: Libby P, Bonow RO, Mann DL, Zipes DP, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 62.
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