Open Heart Surgery

Aortic valve Replacement

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Aortic Valve Replacement

There are several heart valve defects which stimulate the need for aortic valve replacement. However, the two most common reasons why patients need to replace their aortic valve are (i) blood flow is constricted across a narrowed heart valve (aortic stenosis) or (ii) blood flow is leaking back into heart (aortic regurgitation).

As a result of severe stenosis or regurgitation, the aortic valve must be replaced. Otherwise, future heart complications (enlarged heart muscle, congestive heart failure) can occur due to the strain on the cardiac muscle.

Aortic valve replacement surgery may also be needed if the heart valve leaflets have become damaged due to aortic valve calcification, a congenital bicuspid aortic valve, or other formsof aortic valve disease.

Atrial septal defect

Atrial septal defect (ASD) is a form of congenital heart defect that enables blood flow between the left and right atria via the interatrial septum. The interatrial septum is the tissue that divides the right and left atria. Without this septum, or if there is a defect in this septum, it is possible for blood to travel from the left side of the heart to the right side of the heart, or vice versa. Irrespective of interatrial communication bi-directions, this results in the mixing of arterial and venous blood. The mixing of arterial and venous blood may or may not be hemodynamically significant, if even clinically significant. This mixture of blood may or may not result in what is known as a "shunt". The amount of shunting present, if any, dictates hemodynamic significance. A "right-to-left-shunt" typically poses the more dangerous scenario.

The right side of the heart contains venous blood with a low oxygen content, and the left side of the heart contains arterial blood with a high oxygen content. The construction of a heart void of an ASD prevents interatrial communication by means of an uncompromised interatrial septum. This prevents the atria from regular communication with each other, and thus oxygen-rich blood and oxygen-deficient blood do not mix together improperly.