Jefferson University Hospitals

Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral valve prolapse (MVP) occurs when the valve between your heart's left upper chamber (left atrium) and the left lower chamber (left ventricle) doesn't close properly, which can sometimes lead to blood leaking backward into the left atrium, a condition called mitral valve regurgitation. Or, the valve can malfunction in the form of stenosis, a thickening, stiffening or fusing together of the valve flaps and regurgitation or backflow of blood into the atrium.

If not treated, advanced heart valve disease can cause heart failure, stroke or blood clots.

If surgery is required, the cardiac surgeons at Jefferson are equipped to provide the necessary care. Our cardiac surgeons are among the most experienced in the region in performing minimally invasive mitral valve repair. This procedure involves restoring and reconstructing the mitral valve so that it can function normally. If repair is not possible, our physicians can replace the valve altogether with an artificial device.

Jefferson Cardiothoracic Surgeon First in Philadelphia to Perform Totally Robotic Mitral Valve Repair

Cardiothoracic surgeon Gurjyot Bajwa, MD, formerly on staff at the Cleveland Clinic, recently joined Jefferson's cardiothoracic team. In September 2011, she performed the first totally robotic mitral valve repair in Philadelphia.

Traditionally, mitral valve repairs to control blood leakage in the heart involve opening the chest and a long, difficult recovery. Robotic surgery provides surgeons with 3-D visualization in and around the heart, a "miniaturized" field for operating, and three robotic hands. This allows for a more precise surgery, less scarring and blood loss and faster recovery for patients.