Bookmark and Share

The normal mitral valve leaflets meet to prevent blood from flowing back into the left atrium. When the valve is weakened it may prolapse, or balloon back, into the atrium as blood is pumped by the ventricle into the aorta. Many people live with this condition without symptoms. But when a prolapsing valve allows blood to leak back into the atrium, this is called regurgitation. A regurgitating, (or leaky) mitral valve may need to be treated.

Click the buttons to see how normal, prolapsing, and regurgitating valves function. The final still screen provides a direct comparison of all three.


Feedback Form

Tell us what you think of our Cardiovascular Media Library.

Please select one of the following:

*I am a: 
*Topic Rating:

The content in the Cardiovascular Media Library is for your information and education purposes only. The Cardiovascular Media Library is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment for specific medical conditions. Please contact your healthcare provider if you have medical questions or healthcare concerns.

By providing your comments, we may use them as anonymous testimonial.
  I would like to receive information for from the American Heart Association.

Email addresses will not be distributed or shared without your permission.

* Indicates required field.