balloon valvuloplasty

A balloon valvuloplasty is a non-surgical procedure to treat a narrowing of the mitral valve. Long, slender tubes called catheters are placed into blood vessels in the groin and guided into the chambers of the heart. A tiny hole is created in the wall between the heart's upper two chambers to provide an opening to access the left atrium with a special catheter that has a balloon at the tip. The catheter is positioned so the balloon tip is directly inside the narrowed valve. The balloon is inflated and deflated several times to widen the valve opening. Once the opening of the valve has been widened enough, the balloon is deflated and removed.

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