Mitral Valve Repair/Replacement (MVR)


The mitral valve is found on the left side of the heart. It serves as an inflow valve. Its duty is to allow blood from the left atrium to flow into the left ventricle. Surgery may be needed if the valve doesn’t fully open or fully close. When the valve is too narrow, it can make it hard for blood to enter. This can cause it to back up, causing force in the lungs. When the valve doesn’t close appropriately, blood can drip back into the lungs. This can be as a result of a congenital defect, infection, or a degenerative disease.

The faulty valve will be replaced with either a metal artificial valve or a biological valve. The metal valve will last a lifetime but needs you to take blood thinners. The biological valve lasts between 15 to 20 years, and you will not need to take medication that thins your blood.

These also play a role in survival rate:

Your age

Your entire health

Your heart function

Other medical conditions you have

The Procedure

Heart valve replacement surgical treatment is Carried out under general anesthesia with methods that are either conventional or minimally invasive. Conventional surgery needs a large incision from your neck to your navel. If you have less invasive surgery, the length of your incision can be shorter and you can also minimize your risk of infection.

For a surgeon to efficiently remove the diseased valve and replace it with a new one, your heart must be still. You’ll be positioned on a bypass machine that keeps blood circulating through your body and your lungs functioning during surgery. Your doctor will make incisions into your aorta, through which the valves will be taken out and replaced. There’s almost a 2 percent risk of death related with valve replacement surgery.


The majority of heart valve replacement recipients remain in the hospital for approximately five to one week. If your surgery was minimally invasive, you might be discharged earlier. Medical staff will give you pain medication as required and constantly observe your blood pressure, breathing and heart function throughout the first few days after a heart valve replacement.

Full recovery may take some weeks or up to several months, base on your rate of healing and the type of surgery that was done. Infection is the primary risk directly after surgery, so keeping your incisions sterile is of extreme importance.

Always contact your doctor immediately if you have symptoms that indicate infection, such as:

tenderness or swelling at the incision site
increased drainage from the incision site

Follow-up appointments

Follow-up appointments are necessary and will assist your doctor know when you’re ready to resume your everyday activities. Ensure you have a support system in place for the time following your surgery. Ask family members and friends to help you out around the house and take you to medical appointments as you recover.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1.     How much is Open Heart Surgery in Nigeria?

There are various kinds of open-heart surgeries. Some surgeries are meant for valve replacement and some for congenital repairs. A bypass or CABG is done to bypass a clogged artery supplying the blood to heart muscles. Cost of each surgery is different and can only be estimated after proper evaluation of the patient at the hospital. Various factors like gender, age, type of surgery etc. plays an important role in determining the cost of the surgery.

2.     Who is the best heart surgeon in Nigeria?

There are no such criteria which determines efficiency of a cardiac surgeon. Most of the surgeons are good in Nigeria and can operate with good quality results within a standard and appropriately equipped operation theatre. However, for some key surgeries visiting surgeon do come to Nigeria which is a practice followed around the world.

3.     How many cardiothoracic surgeons are in Nigeria?

An estimated number of 80 cardiothoracic surgeons are there in Nigeria. However, it is wise to get the figures verified from Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria and Nigerian Cardiac Society.

4.     Types of Heart Surgery

The heart surgeries can be categorized into below given;

·      Aortic surgery

·      Aortic valve surgery

·      Arrhythmia surgery

·      Congenital heart surgery

·      Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery

·      Heart transplant

·      Left ventricular assist device (LVAD)

·      Left ventricular remodeling/surgical ventricular restoration

·      Myectomy/myotomy

·      Transmyocardial revascularization (TMR)

·      Valvular surgery

5.     Is there any free heart surgery in Nigeria?

There are various NGO’s which organize free heart surgeries in Lagos and Abuja However these are not a continuous running programs and due to COVID-19, such programs are usually on halt.

DisclaimerThe information provided herein is for patient general knowledge only and should not be used during any medical emergency, diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Duplication for personal and commercial use must be authorized in writing by

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