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|The symptoms of a heart attack and valvular heart disease can be similar, but the problems are different. Learn more from Dr. James B. Hermiller, The Care Group at The Heart Center Indianapolis.
Heart valve disease may be present without symptoms. In fact, some people live their entire lives with a heart valve problem and never know it.
If symptoms present, they may not correlate to the severity of your condition. You may have severe symptoms but have a minor valve problem or you may have no symptoms and need prompt intervention. It is important to see a doctor if you experience any of these symptoms:
- Shortness of breath. This may be during exercise, your daily routine or even while lying in bed.
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Fainting or passing out
- Chest pain. This may occur with exertion or exposure to the cold.
- Heart palpitations. This may fel like a rapid or irregular heartbeat, or like your heart is flip flopping.
- Swelling in the ankles, feet, or stomach. Your doctor may refer to this as edema.
- Sudden weight gain. This may present as an increase of 2 to 3 pounds in a day.
- Abdominal pain and decreased appetite: due to an enlarged liver and congestion.
Talk to your doctor if you have any of these symptoms. Be sure to download and print Questions to Ask Your Doctor about Heart Valve Disease as a reminder of what you want to ask and to take notes during your visit.