<< Back

New Hope for Leaky Heart Valves

January 26, 2018

Did you know that your heart beats more than 100,000 times each and every day? And that some hearts are predisposed to leaking valves? But newer studies show that with the right surgeon, a surgeon with tremendous experience, repairing the valve  – in this case specifically the mitral valve – might be better for some patients.

Dr. Sabet Hashim is surgeon-in-chief of the Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute, and an internationally-recognized specialist and researcher on this specific type of heart surgery. 

Q: From your perspective, why is preserving the valve better than replacing it?

A: Preserving the valve keeps the architecture of the heart intact and the patient has much better quality of life and more longevity.

Q: What does that mean to patients?

A: The patient requires less blood thinners, they’re prone to less infections, and the function of the heart is stronger.

Q: Talk about the skill of the surgeon who performs these intricate surgeries. Do you want to have someone who has performed this complicated surgery many, many times successfully? 

A: Yes, actually the quality of the repair is more dependent on the surgeon than on your disease. In terms of difficulty, replacing a valve is like 1 to 5 and repairing it is like 5 to 10. So it requires different sets of skills and much more experience.

Learn more here about mitral valve repair at the Hartford HealthCare Heart & Vascular Institute.