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Heart Valve Problems

Appointments

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call us. 305-243-5554

There are four sets of valves in the heart that may not function properly and may require treatment. A heart valve may be stiff and unable to open enough to allow blood to flow through, or not close properly, allowing blood to leak backward. 

Why Choose UHealth?

The Center for Valvular Heart Disease. Our experts accurately diagnose and treat patients to restore normal valve function.

National experts in transcatheter aortic valve replacement.  We have one of the pioneering sites in the U.S. for transcatheter valve replacement and have been doing it longer than any hospital in Florida. Our specialists are involved in clinical trials for new transcatheter valves and new applications for them.

Home to the Elaine and Sydney Sussman Cardiac Catheterization Lab. We provide advanced imaging capabilities and pinpoint accuracy for new and complex procedures such as transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), mitral valve repair, other minimally invasive procedures, such as valvuloplasty, and other coronary and peripheral vascular interventions. We treat patients with various heart rhythm disorders to ablate the abnormal heart tissue responsible for producing the abnormal cardiac rhythm.

Questions? We're here to help.

Our appointment specialists are ready to help you find what you need. Contact us today.

Treatments 

  • Conventional Surgery

    A valve may be replaced either as an open-heart procedure or a minimally invasive procedure with the heart by-passed on the heart-lung machine. Certain patients need the bypass approach, open or minimally invasive.

  • Minimally Invasive Transcatheter Techniques

    Several different options are available depending on your specific situation and can be done without by-pass and sometimes without general anesthesia.

    • Percutaneous balloon valvuloplasty is a less invasive procedure that can help relieve the symptoms of valve disorders. It involves a small catheter and a balloon that is inflated to stretch the valve opening and allow more blood to flow through it. The balloon is then deflated and guided back through the vessel and removed. Your recovery time is considerably shorter than with traditional surgery.
    • TAVR is a minimally invasive alternative for patients who are too high risk for traditional aortic replacement surgery. An artificial valve is compressed and fed through the catheter until it reaches your aortic valve. Once in place, a balloon expands the artificial valve and the catheter is removed. Because of the effectiveness of this approach, research is looking at using it for low-risk patients, as well.
    • MitraClip procedure: For patients with mitral valve regurgitation (or a leaky heart valve), this minimally invasive procedure inserts a mechanical clasp using a catheter that is guided to your chest through the femoral vein. The clamp reduces leakage and associated symptoms of regurgitation.

Tests 

  • Electrocardiogram (ECG)

    Wires (electrodes) attached to adhesive pads on your skin measure electrical impulses from your heart. An ECG can detect enlarged chambers of your heart and abnormal heart rhythms.

  • Echocardiogram, Both Transthoracic and Esophageal

    In the transthoracic test, a device (transducer) is pressed firmly against your skin and aims an ultrasound beam through your chest to your heart, producing moving images of the working of the heart. In the esophageal approach, the transducer is fed down through the esophagus into the stomach to capture the ultrasound images to show how the heart is moving with beats.

  • Exercise Testing

    Your heart rhythm, blood pressure and breathing may be monitored while you walk on a treadmill so your doctor may evaluate symptoms, determine your exercise capacity, and determine if exercise provokes abnormal heart rhythms. Alternatively, you may be given medication that simulates the effect of exercise on the heart. 

  • Holter Monitor

    You may wear a portable ECG that records your heart's activity continuously over one to two days. This test is often done in people with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

  • Cardiac Computed Tomography (CT) Exam

    Used frequently to evaluate valve disease, cardiac CT gives detailed pictures of the actual shape and size of your heart. In some cases, cardiac MRI, which uses magnetic fields and radio waves to create images of your heart, may be useful.

  • Cardiac Catheterization

    This procedure uses a catheter threaded through veins into the heart to see inside the heart, measure pressures, and look at blood vessels to help determine therapy options. 

Accepted Insurances

Note: Health plans that are currently contracted with UHealth are listed below. However, please check with your insurance provider to verify that UHealth is part of your provider network.

  • Aetna WC
  • Aetna Affiliates/Signature Adm (ASA)
  • Aetna Behavioral Health
  • Aetna Elect Choice (EPO)
  • Aetna Florida Healthy Kids
  • Aetna HMO
  • Aetna Medicaid HMO
  • Aetna Medicare HMO
  • Aetna Medicare PPO
  • Aetna POS
  • Aetna PPO
  • Aetna UM Employee HMO 1
  • Aetna UM Employee HMO 2
  • Aetna UM Employee POS HRA
  • Aetna/Coventry Institutes of Excellence (IOE)
  • Amerigroup Florida Healthy Kids
  • Amerigroup Medicaid HMO
  • Argus Vision
  • AvMed Choice
  • AvMed HMO/POS
  • AvMed MDC and JHS Groups
  • AvMed Medicare HMO
  • AXIS
  • BCBS Blue Options Network Blue PPO
  • BCBS BlueCare HealthOptions HMO
  • BCBS BlueChoice PPC/PPO
  • BCBS Miami Dade Blue PPO Limited Benefits Plan
  • BCBS of Florida (All products except "SELECT" Plans)
  • BCBS of Florida (Commercial plans exclude HIX Select)
  • BCBS Traditional PHS/PPO
  • Beacon Health (ValueOption)
  • Beech Street PPO
  • Broward Health Medical Center
  • CarePlus Medicare HMO
  • Catholic Hospice
  • CCP/CMS Title XIX (Medicaid Enrolled in South Florida)
  • CCP/CMS Title XXI (Non Medicaid Enrolled in South Florida)
  • CCP/MMA (Broward County residents)
  • Charlotte County Sheriffs Office PPO
  • Cigna Affiliates
  • Cigna Behavioral Health
  • Cigna Dental HMO/PPO
  • Cigna EPO
  • Cigna HMO
  • Cigna Life Source (Intracorp is part of Cigna Lifesource)
  • Cigna MDCPS Jackson Sr. High
  • Cigna POS
  • Cigna PPO
  • Cigna Shared Administration
  • Clear Health Alliance SNP Medicaid HMO
  • Concordia Behavioral Health
  • CorVel WC
  • Coventry First Health WC
  • Coventry Health Care of Florida (HIP) HMO/POS
  • Coventry Health Care of Florida (HIP) PPO
  • Coventry Health Plan of Florida (Foundation) HMO
  • Coventry Health Plan of Florida (Foundation) POS
  • Coventry National PPO
  • Coventry Summit Medicare HMO
  • Coventry Vista Medicare HMO
  • Coventry First Health PPO
  • Delta Dental PPO
  • DentaQuest (ADI)
  • DIKLA
  • Dimension WC
  • Dimension Plus PPO
  • EHN PPO
  • EQUIAN (Health Systems International)
  • Europe Assistance/Global Corporate Solutions (Care Management Network)
  • eyeQuest
  • FCCI WC
  • Florida Healthcare Plan (Affiliate of BCBSFL)
  • Florida PACE (FPC)
  • Freedom Health Medicaid HMO
  • Freedom Health Medicare HMO
  • Gallagher Bassett WC (MDCPS & FCSRMC)
  • Global Excel Mgt PPO
  • Great West (Cigna) HMO/POS
  • Guardian Life PPO
  • HAA Preferred Partners
  • Health First Health HMO/POS
  • Health First Health Medicare HMO
  • Health First Health PPO
  • Health Net Veterans Choice HMO
  • Heritage Summit Healthcare WC
  • Humana Behavioral Health (LifeSynch)
  • Humana Dental/CompBenefits/OHS
  • Humana EPO
  • Humana HMO
  • Humana Medicaid HMO
  • Humana Medicare HMO
  • Humana National Transplant
  • Humana PPO
  • Humana Premier
  • iCare Health Solutions
  • Interlink Health Services
  • International Kids Fund (IKF)
  • League Medical Concepts Federal Inmates
  • Life Trac
  • Magellan Behavioral Health
  • Magellan Complete Care SNP Medicaid HMO
  • MDAbroad
  • Medica Medicare HMO
  • Medical Development In't (MDI)-Federal Inmates
  • Medicus
  • Metlife Dental PPO
  • MHNet Behavioral Network (MHNet)
  • Molina
  • Molina Market Place
  • Molina Medicaid HMO
  • Molina Medicare HMO
  • Morgan White International
  • MultiPlan PPO
  • Naphcare (Federal Prisoners)
  • National Healthcare Solutions Inc.
  • Neighborhood HealthPlan HMO/POS
  • Neighborhood HealthPlan PPO
  • North Broward Hospital District PPO
  • Olympus Managed Healthcare
  • Optum
  • Positive Healthcare SNP Medicaid HMO
  • Positive Healthcare SNP Medicare HMO
  • Prestige Health Choice Medicaid HMO
  • Prime Health Services WC
  • Quality Health Management
  • Religious Order of Jehovah's Witnesses PPO
  • Rockport Healthcare Group WC
  • Royal Caribbean Cruises PPO
  • Sanus Health Corporation
  • Seasons Hospice
  • Simply Healthcare Medicaid HMO
  • Solstice Dental HMO/PPO
  • Start Healthcare Network
  • Sunshine
  • Sunshine AMBETTER
  • Sunshine Healthy Kids HMO
  • Sunshine Medicaid HMO
  • Sunshine Medicare HMO
  • Tricare South Prime HMO
  • Tricare South Standard PPO
  • United Behavioral Health (UBH)
  • UnitedHealthcare Affiliates
  • UnitedHealthcare Healthy Kids HMO
  • UnitedHealthcare HMO/POS
  • UnitedHealthcare Medicaid HMO
  • UnitedHealthcare Medicare Nursing Home Plan
  • UnitedHealthcare PPO
  • University of Miami Athletic Dept PPO
  • VUMI
  • Wellcare/Staywell Healthy Kids HMO
  • Wellcare/Staywell Medicaid HMO
  • Wexford Health State Inmates
  • Worldwide Managed Care