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Floppy Valve Syndrome

Floppy Valve Syndrome Causes

The underlying etiology that causes the autonomic dysregulation and the structural abnormalities appearing to the associated with MVP remain unclear.

Floppy Valve Syndrome Definition

Floppy valve syndrome or also known as Mitral valve prolapse is characterized by the displacement of an abnormally thickened mitral valve leaflet into the left atrium during systole. MVP, in its nonclassis form, carries a low risk of complications. Severe cases of MVP though may include complications such as infective endocarditis, regurgitation and in rare circumstances, cardiac arrest that usually results to sudden death. The term for the disease was coined by J. Michael Criley in 1966. It gained acceptance over JB Barlow's ?billowing? of the mitral valve description. MVP has different subtypes namely classic, nonclassic, symmetric, asymmetric, flail or non-flail. The subtypes are based on the leaflet thickness, convacity and type of connection to the mitral annulus.

Floppy Valve Syndrome Diagnosis

The most useful method to diagnose a prolapsed mitral valve ior a floppy valve s echocardiography. Two and three-dimensional echocardiography provide images of the mitral leaflets relative to the mitral annulus. With this, measurement of the leaflet thickness and their displacement relative to the annulus is possible.

Floppy Valve Syndrome Symptoms and Signs

The prevalence of some symptoms of a floppy valve syndrome or MVP does not have a significant difference from the general population. Some MVP patients may experience heart palpitations, atrial fibrillation or syncope. These symptoms are caused by the mitral regurgitation and are not directly caused by the prolapsing mitral valve. The mitral regurgitation is often a result of the prolapse. Floppy valve syndrome patients also tend to have low body mass index (BMI) for still unknown reasons. They are also usually leaner than those without the disease. Individuals with the Marfan syndrome are also known to have frequent occurrences of MVP.

Floppy Valve Syndrome Treatment

Individuals with floppy valve syndrome or MVP and symptoms of dysautonomia such as palpitations and chest pain may benefit from beta-blockers while those with prior stroke or atrial fibrillation may require blood thinners like aspirin or warfarin. The condition associated with mitral regurgitation meanwhile can be treated with repair or surgical replacement of the mitral valve. Compared to replacement, repair of the mitral valve is mostly preferable but must be done by skilled surgeons. Urgent attention is required for symptomatic patients with evidence of diminished left ventricular function or left ventricular dilatation.

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