Disease of the heart valves is increasingly common and frequently requires treatment, usually a combination of drug therapy and surgery to repair or replace the valve. The majority of valvular heart disease occurs in older people, and is due to degenerative disease of the valve tissue. Understanding how to diagnose, investigate and manage patients with valvular heart disease is a core skill for a wide range of doctors, including cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, general physicians, general surgeons and anaesthetists. Valvular heart disease can also occur in younger patients and can be particularly challenging to diagnose and treat in pregnant women. New advances in cardiology mean a range of valvular heart disease can be treated with percutaneous procedures avoiding the need for full cardiac surgery.This unique text covers all aspects of valvular heart disease, including normal valve anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology, modes of investigation, assessment and treatment of specific valve lesions, valve surgery (both medical and surgical aspects), treatment in pregnancy or during non-cardiac surgery, and the devastating complication of infective endocarditis, in an easy-to-read, accessible format. It contains over 150 high quality pictures and illustrations, providing contemporary diagnostic imaging (including conventional radiography, echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging) to demonstrate the importance of imaging in diagnosis and treatment. Individual valve lesions are reviewed in turn with specific indications for intervention in line with current European guidelines. The handbook complements the curriculum for specialist training in the UK, and is relevant to candidtaes in preparation for accreditation with the British Society of Echocardiography.
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