Mitral stenosis is a heart valve disorder that involves the mitral valve. This valve separates the upper and lower chambers on the left side of the heart. Stenosis refers to a condition in which the valve does not open fully, restricting blood flow.
Mitral valve obstruction
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Blood that flows between different chambers of your heart must flow through a valve. The valve between the two chambers on the left side of your heart is called the mitral valve. It opens up enough so that blood can flow from one chamber of your heart (left atria) to the next chamber (left ventricle). It then closes, keeping blood from flowing backwards.
Mitral stenosis refers to when the valve cannot open as wide. As a result, less blood flows to the body. The upper heart chamber swells as pressure builds up. Blood may flow back into the lungs. Fluid then collects in the lung tissue (
In adults, mitral stenosis occurs most often in those who have had
Only rarely do other factors cause mitral stenosis in adults. These include calcium deposits forming around the mitral valve, radiation treatment to the chest, and some medications.
Children may be born with mitral stenosis (congenital) or other birth defects involving the heart that cause mitral stenosis. Often, there are other heart defects present, along with the mitral stenosis.
Mitral stenosis may run in families.
Review Date: 05/06/2010
Reviewed By: Issam Mikati, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.