Mitral Valve Stenosis

What is mitral valve stenosis?

The mitral valve plays a key role in the functioning of the heart. This one-way valve helps move oxygenated (red) blood from the left atrium into the left ventricle, which then pushes the blood out to the body. If the mitral valve is too narrow — a condition called mitral valve stenosis — blood backs up in the left atrium, with several upstream effects.

  • Added pressure in the left atrium can cause the heart to enlarge and even cause arrhythmias.
  • Because the lungs feed oxygenated blood into the left atrium, the pressure can push blood back into the vessels of the lungs, causing pulmonary hypertension.
  • Because it has to work harder, the heart can weaken over time.

Children with mitral valve stenosis can have increased respiratory symptoms, shortness of breath and difficulty with exercise. Learn more about the symptoms and causes of mitral valve stenosis.

How we care for mitral valve stenosis

The Boston Children’s Hospital Congenital Heart Valve Program team has extensive experience treating mitral valve stenosis in children, adolescents and adults. Our specialized training and experience mean that we understand the unique challenges, circumstances and intricacies of working with young people who have mitral valve stenosis and other heart problems.

Our areas of innovation for mitral valve stenosis

Boston Children’s continues to innovate by offering mitral valve repairs and replacement to even the youngest and smallest children with exceptional results. In addition, we’ve developed a groundbreaking approach to valve replacement in small children using the Melody® Transcatheter Pulmonary Valve, and with catheter-balloon interventions the valve can grow with the baby.