Dr Oz: Aortic Valve Replacement + What Is Aortic Stenosis?

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Dr Oz: 30 Years Of Heart Disease

Dr Oz said that as a surgeon, there is no greater feeling than providing a patient with a better quality of life. For a patient named Charles, he had a history of heart problems, and Dr Oz worried that for him, that wouldn’t be possible. Dr Oz explained that it’s important for medical students to learn that heart surgery isn’t just about the mechanics of the heart, and that every patient is putting their lives in the hands of their doctors, so they have to take responsibility for that.

Dr Oz: Aortic Valve Replacement + What Is Aortic Stenosis?

Dr Oz had the cameras rolling as one of his patients underwent an aortic valve replacement due to aortic stenosis. (Wessel du Plooy / Shutterstock.com)

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Charles has been dealing with heart disease for 20 years, and said that he was never super physical, but he did do light exercise and play golf. Now, he gets very tired easily, and his condition got worse and worse until he had to undergo an operation. He’s been with his wife for 30 years.

Dr Oz: Heart Surgery & Aortic Valve Replacement

Twenty years ago, Charles had heart surgery to circumvent five blocked coronary arteries. Now, the aortic valve is failing and needs to be replaced. Charles said he has faith that the doctors will do their job. He’s more worried about his wife, who said she’s been a nervous basket case because her previous husband died the day after major surgery in the middle of the night. “I will not bury a second husband,” she said.

Dr Oz explained that normally the heart squeezes 70% of the blood that passes through it, but Charles’ only passes along 15% of the blood because the valve is so tight that nothing can get through it. The doctors needed to change that valve, but the challenge was the previous operation that Charles had. Dr Oz said it was an operation that no one can guarantee success in, but they want to give Charles the best shot at surviving and thriving.

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Marilyn, Charles’ wife, is a retired nurse so she was well aware of all the things that could go wrong, which contributed to her nervousness. Dr Oz explained that the heart was swollen, so they had to give it time to rest to recover from a couple hours of not getting any blood.

Dr Oz: What Is Aortic Stenosis?

Dr Oz then explained that aortic stenosis is one of the most common reasons for replacing the aortic valve. He said the heart’s job is to pump blood out, which is what the valves are for. The valve makes sure that blood can’t come back. Over time, it gets harder for blood to get through, which puts stress on the heart and can lead to shortness of breath, dizziness, and even death. Doctors can tell pretty quickly if you have this problem because they can hear it when they listen to the heart.

Dr Oz shared that resting Charles’ heart let it recover, which taught him a lot about the healing powers of time. He said it reminded him that it’s important to have the right building blocks for health, like eating right and exercising.

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