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Signs and Symptoms of Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral valve prolapse is the most common heart abnormality, affecting approximately three percent of the population.  It is thought to be genetic.  Small thin women are most likely to have mitral valve prolapse. For most people, mitral valve prolapse is a benign condition, with no complications.  For a few people, however, mitral valve prolapse is linked to stroke and other conditions.  We have put together a list of common signs and symptoms of mitral valve prolapse below.

Also, we have information on diagnosis, helpful books and valuable resources for patients.

The Most Common Signs and Symptoms of Mitral Valve Prolapse include:

  • Dizziness or shortness of breath, especially when lying flat
  • Racing heart beat
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Anxiety attacks
  • Night panic attacks
  • Physical weakness
  • Difficulty staying asleep
  • Awareness of heartbeat
  • Chest pain
  • Chest tightness
  • Fluttering in chest
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Low exercise tolerance
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms
  • Feeling of fullness or pressure in the head
  • Great fatigue

Many people with mitral valve prolapse have no symptoms whatsoever.  For most people, the condition is mild, and surgical intervention or medication is not necessary.

Diagnosis of Mitral Valve Prolapse

Mitral valve prolapse is diagnosed most often by listening to the heartbeat with a stethoscope.  A diagnosis of mitral valve prolapse is made if the doctor hears clicking sounds in the heart.  As well, a rushing or swooshing sound may be heard, indicating a heart murmur, which is blood flowing backward through your mitral valve.  Other tests that assist in the diagnosis of mitral valve prolapse include a chest x-ray, an echocardiogram, an electrocardiogram (ECG), s stress test and cardiac catheterization, if the problem is deemed severe.

Books for People with Signs and Symptoms of Mitral Valve Prolapse

The Mitral Valve Prolapse Syndrome/Dysautonomia Survival Guide
James F. Durante
Natural Therapies for Mitral Valve Prolapse
Ronald L. Hoffman

Taking Control: Living with the Mitral Valve Prolapse Syndrome
Kristine A. Bludau Scordo
Confronting Mitral Valve Prolapse Syndrome
Lyn Frederickson

Mitral Valve Prolapse Resources

General Patient Resources

  • The Society for Mitral Valve Prolapse Syndrome/Dysautonomia

A list of resources for people with mitral valve prolapse syndrome. MVP Centers, web sites, literature and books. Educational and support information.

  • Midwest Heart Specialists

Before one can understand MVP, one needs to look first at the basic structure and function of the heart.

  • Experience Project

Anonymously connect with people who share your experiences– like those who say ‘I Have Mitral Valve Prolapse’. Read hundreds of true stories, share your own story anonymously, get feedback and comments, chat in the discussion forum, help others, meet new friends, and so much more– all free

  • WD

Information including symptoms, diagnosis, misdiagnosis, treatment, causes, patient stories, videos, forums, prevention, and prognosis.

Medical Resources

  • Mayo Clinic

Comprehensive overview covers symptoms, causes and treatment of this heart disorder.

  • Pub Med Health

Reviews causes, risk factors, symptoms, treatment, prognosis and complications.

  • Medicine Net . com

Learn about mitral valve prolapse (MVP), the most common heart valve abnormality. Symptoms include fatigue, palpitations, chest pain, anxiety, and migraine headaches.