2008 Volume 6 Issue 1 Pages 1-8
Background. Severe mitral regurgitation (MR) is one of the most important complications of mitral valve prolapse (MVP) and it often requires surgical treatment. This study is aimed to assess the relation of mitral valve morphology to severe MR complicated with MVP.
Methods. Transesophageal echocardiography was performed in 37 patients with MVP and 30 control subjects.
Results. The anterior mitral leaflet (AML) and posterior mitral leaflet (PML) were thicker and longer, and the mitral annulus was larger in patients with MVP than in control subjects (p<0.05). The degree of MVP correlated significantly with the leaflet thickness in systole (AML: r=0.70, PML: r=0.65, p<0.05). In patients with MVP without ruptured chordae tendineae (RCT), the severity of MR correlated significantly with the leaflet thickness, leaflet length and annular diameter (p<0.05). The prolapsed PMLs with RCT were thicker and longer than those without RCT (p<0.05).
Conclusions. The leaflet thickness, leaflet length and annular diameter are "proportionally" redundant in patients with MVP, and the redundancy is closely related to the occurrence of RCT or severe MR.