Valvular Heart Disease
The function of the heart’s valves is to keep blood flowing through the heart in the right direction. But a variety of conditions can lead to valvular damage. You may be born with valvular disease, or the valves may be damaged by such conditions as rheumatic fever, infections, connective tissue disorders, and certain medications or radiation treatments for cancer. Valves may narrow (stenosis), leak (regurgitation or insufficiency) or not close properly (prolapse).
Bacterial endocarditis is a treatable condition with fatal consequences when treatment is delayed. It is caused by microbe infection of the valves causing irreversible damage.