Heart valve disorders: pulmonary stenosis
Mild stenosis produces no symptoms.
If it is more severe, symptoms may be:
- difficulty breathing
- a blueish cast to the skin
- cardiac insufficiency
An echocardiogram is the usual way to diagnose the condition. This test assesses the right ventricle, the pulmonary valve, post-stenotic dilatation of the pulmonary artery and pressure gradients through the valve.
Percutaneous pulmonary valvuloplasty is used to treat pulmonary stenosis, and is suitable for patients with a moderate condition over two years old.
In severe cases, percutaneous pulmonary valvuloplasty can be carried out at any age. This procedure is associated with a lower short term morbidity and mortality rate than surgical valvotomy. The procedures have similar long term outcomes.
Valvuloplasty generally attains excellent results. At a 15-year check up, only 4 % of cases need a second procedure. Mild pulmonary valvular insufficiency is well tolerated.