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What is a double heart valve replacement?
A double heart valve replacement is a procedure in which both mitral and the aortic valves are replaced. This type of surgery is not so common as the others and has slightly higher mortality rate. A double heart valve replacement is generally performed on individuals with rheumatic heart disease. This procedure has benefited patients with aortic as well as mitral valve-related diseases. The decision to perform this surgery also depends on the risk factors such as the age and health of the patient. Heart valve replacement helps improve symptoms as well as quality of life. Mechanical as well as biological valves are available for replacement using different surgical approaches. Success rates for the procedure are quite high, and individuals can live for several years with a replacement heart valve.
What are the types of double heart valve replacement?
Based on the material of the valve to be replaced, a double heart valve replacement is of two types:
Mechanical Valves: These valves are made of carbon or metal and are designed to work like the natural valves. The most common type of mechanical valve is bileaflet valve. This is made up of two carbon leaflets placed in a ring that is covered with polyester knit fabric. Mechanical valves are very durable, well-tolerated and designed to last a lifetime.
Biological Valves: Biological valves (also known as tissue or bioprosthetic valves) are made of either bovine tissue, porcine tissue, or human tissue. There are no differences in durability between the different types of biological valves. Biological valves could have some artificial parts to provide support and make it easy to put in place.
Causes and Symptoms
X-Ray: A chest X-ray produces a picture of the lungs, heart and bones of the chest. A chest X-ray can reveal the heart’s overall shape, although it cannot show the inside structures of your heart.
CT scan: A CT scan produces pictures of the valve anatomy, which allows the evaluation of the severity of regurgitation and stenosis. A CT scan also can find if there is a valvular lesion or nearby tumors impacting the function.
Cardiac Catheterization: Cardiac catheterization is used to see the blood flowing to the heart muscle, and provide key information about narrowed heart valves and leaky heart valves.
Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging. This is a non-invasive imaging test used for evaluating the function as well as the structure of the heart. This test uses magnets, radio waves and a computer to produce clear, detailed pictures of the heart.
Risk & Complications
Blood clots: There can be clots in case of a mechanical valve replacement. The patient will be prescribed anticoagulant medicine in case they are at risk.
Stroke/transient ischaemic attack: This may happen when the supply of blood to the brain is blocked.
Valve could wear out: This may occur in people who have a biological valve replacement for a long period of time.
Infections: There can be wound infections, bladder infections, lung infections and heart valve infections. You will be be given antibiotics to lower this risk.
Excessive bleeding: Special tubes might be inserted into the chest to drain out the blood, and in some cases, another surgery may be needed to stop bleeding.
Kidney problems: In some rare cases, the kidneys stops working in the first few days after surgery. In some cases, temporary dialysis might be required.
Irregular heartbeat: This can be seen in nearly 25% of people after a double heart valve replacement surgery and usually goes away with time. In some rare cases, the patient will need a pacemaker to control their heartbeat.
Preparation of Treatment
Before you undergo surgery to replace a diseased heart valve, you will have to prepare for your hospital stay. You need to visit the hospital several days in advance of the surgery for a hospital preadmission session. As valve replacement surgery is a critical procedure, start preparing for this several days ahead of the surgery. Try to get into good condition by getting plenty of rest, eating healthy foods, and limiting vigorous physical activities. You should ask your doctor if there are any medications you need to take before your surgery. You may need to use a special soap to use on the day of the surgery. You will need to avoid food or drink after 11:00 PM the night before the surgery. You should stop taking blood-thinning medications. You may be prescribed other medicines before surgery. Tell the doctor about any illnesses that you have. It may seem minor, but it may affect your recovery. In case you smoke, you will have to stop two weeks ahead of surgery to help prevent breathing problems and blood clots.
Best Doctors for Heart Valve Replacement (Double) Treatment
Dr. Bhaba Nanda Das37+ Yrs. Exp.MBBS, MS & M.ChCardiothoracic & Vascular Surgeon
Dr. Vijay Kohli43+ Yrs. Exp.MBBS, MS - General Surgery, MCh - Cardiovascular and Thoracic SurgeryCardiothoracic Surgeon
Dr. Naresh Trehan40+ Yrs. Exp.MBBS, Diploma in Cardiology, Diplomater, American Board of Cardiology CardiologistChairman & Managing Director
Best Hospitals for Heart Valve Replacement (Double) Treatment
Single Valve Replacement: This procedure addresses the replacement of a single malfunctioning valve, typically the mitral or aortic valve. It's often preferred for patients with less extensive heart disease or those facing higher risks associated with a more complex surgery.
Double Valve Replacement: As the name suggests, this surgery replaces both the mitral and aortic valve simultaneously. It's recommended when both valves are significantly compromised, and opting for two separate surgeries carries higher risks. While more complex, it offers the benefit of a single recovery period and eliminates the need for a second surgery later.
Cost of the treatment
Cost of double heart valve replacement
The cost of double heart valve replacement surgery in India ranges from $8,000 to $12,000. However, the cost may vary depending on several factors such as the type of hospitals and experience of the cardiac surgeons. The success rate of double heart valve replacement surgery in India is around 95-97%. India has emerged as a popular destination for the treatment of heart problems. Cutting-edge technologies and mode catheterization facilities all have made this feasible. The doctors treating complex heart conditions are highly experienced and have extensive training to gain required skills. Compared to Weste countries, the cost of double heart valve replacement surgery in India is lower.
Recovery after double heart valve replacement surgery
Recovering from double heart valve surgery generally takes around 4-8 weeks. If you undergo minimally invasive surgery, you could recover sooner. Before leaving hospital, you will be provided detailed instructions for medications, exercise, wound care and resuming normal activities. You will be asked to indulge in a cardiac rehabilitation program that helps to support you and get back to your daily routine. For the first 3 weeks of recovery, you will get tired easily. You should avoid driving for many weeks after the surgery. During the first 6-8 weeks after surgery, you should avoid picking up anything more than ten pounds. Patients would also need to make some lifestyle changes for speedy recovery such as eating a balanced diet, managing stress, exercising regularly and avoiding tobacco.
Award-winning CEO of Marlin Medical Assistance Pvt. Ltd
Dr. Mohammad Afzal Siddiqui is an award-winning CEO of Marlin Medical Assistance Pvt. Ltd., a professionally managed medical tourism holding company and the active Director of Alshifa Healthcare Services Pvt. Ltd., a full-service medical tourism aggregation agency servicing JCI and NABH/ NABL accredited Hospitals across the country’s 5 locations.
In addition to Marlin, Alshifa also includes Media Group, which houses Arabic Medical Tourism e-Magazine healthandtour.com. The E-magazine “مجلة الصحة والسياحة” provides a wide scope of medical tourism information to healthcare travellers to find a safe, effective and cost-saving solution for their medical and healthcare needs. In addition to running E-Magazine, Dr. Mohammad Afzal also serves as Delhi-state coordinator in Foundation of Healthcare and Wellness Promotion focused on bringing India’s Healthcare closer to the world and smoothen world’s access to Indian Healthcare.