Heart Murmur (cont.)
Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Daniel Lee Kulick, MD, FACC, FSCAI
Dr. Kulick received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Southern California, School of Medicine. He performed his residency in internal medicine at the Harbor-University of California Los Angeles Medical Center and a fellowship in the section of cardiology at the Los Angeles County-University of Southern California Medical Center. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Cardiology.
In this Article
- What is a heart murmur?
- What causes a heart murmur?
- What are the risk factors for heart murmur?
- What are the symptoms of a heart murmur?
- When should I seek medical care for a heart murmur?
- How is a heart murmur diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for a heart murmur?
- What are the complications of a heart murmur?
- Can a heart murmur be prevented?
- What is the outlook (prognosis) for a patient with a heart murmur?
- Heart Murmur At A Glance
- Find a local Cardiologist in your town
What is the outlook (prognosis) for a patient with a heart murmur?
Many patients have physiology heart murmurs and need no intervention or care. Those whose heart murmurs signal a structural issue with the heart may be monitored for symptoms that will gradually develop over time.
In infants and children, heart murmurs due to atrial or ventricular septal defects may need surgery to repair the abnormality and they can expect to have a normal heart after repair.
In adults, medications and lifestyle changes may help minimize the need for surgery to repair or replace a damaged heart valve. The goal is to return the blood flow patterns in the heart to normal and allow the patient to return to an active, normal lifestyle.
Heart Murmur At A Glance
- Turbulent blood flow within the heart causes abnormal sounds called
- Most murmurs are functional, or physiologic, and are normal.
- Some murmurs are due to abnormal function of the valves in the heart. The
valves may have narrowing (stenosis) or they may leak (regurgitation).
- Holes in the septum or wall that divides the atrium or ventricles may cause
- A murmur is a physical finding and not a structural problem within the heart itself. Treatment is aimed at the underlying condition.
REFERENCE: Primary Cardiology. BraunwaldE, Goldman L. Saunders/Elsevier Science. 2nd edition. 2003
Last Editorial Review: 12/17/2009 11:54:17 AM
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