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High blood pressure tied to common heart valve disorder: study

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-10-18 10:35

High blood pressure tied to common heart valve disorder: study

[Photo/Xinhua]

A strong link has been for the first time established between high blood pressure and the most common heart valve disorder known as mitral regurgitation, a new study said Tuesday.

The findings, published in the US journal PLOS Medicine, showed that the valve disorder, which is increasingly diagnosed worldwide, particularly among older people, is not an inevitable consequence of aging, as previously assumed, but may be preventable.

"Given the large and growing burden of mitral valve disease, particularly among older people, we believe these findings are likely to have significant implications for medical policy and practice around the world," lead author Kazem Rahimi, professor and deputy director of the University of Oxford's George Institute for Global Health, said in a statement.

Mitral regurgitation can lead to a backflow of blood into the heart, causing symptoms such as shortness of breath, tiredness, dizziness and chest pain.

It is more common in older people, and may be associated with a greater risk of mortality.

Despite significant advances in the understanding of valve disease, mitral regurgitation has until now been largely considered a degenerative disorder, resulting from a weakening of the valve over time due to "wear and tear."

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