Bicuspid Aortic Valve is a defect in the heart’s aortic valve that is present at birth (congenital). The exact cause of Bicuspid Aortic Valve is not known, but it has been suggested by some medical experts that it may be caused by a connective tissue disorder similar to that which causes the heart and blood vessel problems in Marfan Syndrome.
Often complications of Bicuspid Aortic Valve may include aortic aneurysm (bulge) and dissection (tear), which can be life-threatening. It is vitally important to receive a proper and early diagnosis.
A person who has been diagnosed with Bicuspid Aortic Valve should be closely monitored with relation to heart, valves and aorta.
Bicuspid Aortic Valve is very serious, considering the aorta is the major blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. The aortic valve allows blood to flow from the heart to the aorta (the major blood vessel that carries blood from the heart), and prevents blood from leaking back into the heart (aortic regurgitation).
Usually, the aortic valve has three flaps controlling this blood flow. A person with Bicuspid Aortic Valve may however have only two flaps and the valve may not be able to completely stop blood from leaking back into the heart. Additionally, the aortic valve can become stiff (aortic stenosis), making the heart pump harder to get past the valve. Also, the aorta may become enlarged.
A person with Bicuspid Aortic Valve can also have abnormal coronary arteries (blood vessels that branch off from the aorta near the heart), and aortic aneurysm, an abnormal thoracic aorta (the portion of the aorta that passes through the upper chest), and unstable high blood pressure.
Sign of Bicuspid Aortic Valve may also include:
– enlarged heart
– heart murmur
– weak pulse in the wrists and ankles
– aortic stenosis
– aortic regurgitation