Heart valve surgery addresses the problem of heart valves not functioning right. In heart valve disease, either the valve may not open completely, or it may not shut tight. In either circumstance, blood doesn’t move through the heart’s chambers the way it should, thus putting more pressure on the heart.
Heart valve surgery abroad is gaining popularity with medical tourists as the expertise of cardiac surgeons in India is proved every day. Also, heart valve surgery is pretty cheap abroad when compared to the costs in the US.
In heart valve surgery, one or more valves are repaired or replaced, depending on the condition of the valve. The decision to either repair or replace the valve can be taken only during surgery and not before. Your surgeon will discuss with you the options and any other procedures you may need.
Valve repair: A ring may be sewn around the opening of the valve to tighten it. Other parts of the valve may be cut, shortened, separated, or made stronger to help the valve open and close right.
Valve replacement: If a valve cannot be repaired, it may be replaced with a prosthetic valve. Two kinds of prosthetic heart valves are available: mechanical and biological.
A mechanical valve is created from artificial materials. Though it lasts long, the biggest disadvantage is that you will have to be on a lifetime therapy of anticoagulants or blood thinners as blood tends to clot on or around the mechanical valve.
Biological (tissue) valves are taken from pig, cow, or human donors. These valves don’t last as long as mechanical valves, but they usually do not necessitate the long-term use of an anticoagulant.
Choosing the valve type is a decision on which your doctor will advise you. The decision is influenced by factors like your age, the kind of work you do, the size of your valve, the condition of your heart, your ability to take an anticoagulant, and how many valves you may need.
Heart valve surgery can also be done through the minimally invasive method. However, a total evaluation of your condition is required before determining if you are a candidate for this method. Minimally invasive heart valve surgery has significant advantages over the traditional method like faster recovery, lesser pain, and less visible scarring.
The fact that they may need a major heart surgery can be upsetting for many. But try not to panic, as that could only worsen matters. We have compiled a list of things to do before heart valve surgery and what you can expect from it:
Aftercare is crucial to the success of heart valve surgery. It also helps to know what to expect after the procedure:
Precautions to be taken when on Anticoagulants (Blood Thinners)
You will slowly be able to participate in normal activities again, though the recovery time varies from patient to patient. Recovery depends on your overall strength. The problems that the old, damaged valve caused will no longer occur and the new heart valve will help your heart function better.
Some patients may respond to medications for the conditions associated with heart valve disease. The other alternative to heart valve surgery is a procedure called balloon valvotomy: it increases the opening of a narrowed valve. Your doctor will help you decide if this procedure is right for you.
The cost of heart valve surgery varies between $ 20,000 – $40,000. This can be well out of the reach of many, especially of those who are not insured. Hence, it is no surprise that many patients are opting to go abroad to countries like India, Turkey, and Mexico for heart valve surgery.
These countries have achieved excellence in cardiac care and have high success rates. No wonder, medical tourism is a booming industry in India, Turkey, and Mexico.
With advances in technology, heart valve surgery has become very safe and holds a lot of promise for patients. Hence, do not let considerations of cost come in the way of your enjoying a better lifestyle. Medical tourism is here to help.
Mitral valve repair abroad: Information about mitral valve repair in India, Turkey, and Mexico, along with risk, benefit, and cost data.
American Heart Association: The American Heart association is a cardiac surgery information resource for patients, care-givers, healthcare professionals, and researchers.
Cardiological Society of India: The Cardiological Society of India was established in 1948 in Calcutta (now Kolkata), a year ahead of the birth of the American College of Cardiology and the International Society & Federation of Cardiology. It has among its members eminent cardiologists in India. Cardiovascular research established four decades ago in India is being carried forward with technology equal to the best in the world.
The Singapore Cardiac Society: Instituted in 1969, its mission is to advance knowledge and practice of cardiovascular medicine in Singapore and to promote regional and international co-operation in cardiovascular medicine.
Turkish Society of Cardiology: Founded in 1962, the Society’s mission is to prevent the cardiovascular risk of the Turkish population by supporting the professional and public education and research.
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