Mitral Valve Regurgitation
Blood Leaks from the Left Ventricle
In mitral valve regurgitation (MR), the mitral valve does not close tightly, resulting in backward flow or "leaking" of blood from the left ventricle into the left atrium.
Typically Requires Treatment
This condition typically needs to be treated, with medications, surgery, or both. As many as one in five people over age 55 have some degree of mitral valve regurgitation, also known as mitral regurgitation, mitral insufficiency or mitral incompetence.
Can Lead to Serious Heart Conditions
If mitral valve regurgitation is serious enough, blood flow to the rest of the body may decrease and blood returning to the receiving chamber can increase pressure in the lungs. The left ventricle at first may enlarge to compensate but eventually the change weakens the heart and can lead to heart failure and heart rhythm irregularities including atrial fibrillation.