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Corrigan Minehan Heart Center

Heart Valve Program

The Heart Valve Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital Corrigan Minehan Heart Center brings together specialists to evaluate, treat and provide long-term care for patients with heart valve conditions.
Dr. Judy Hung, Associate Director of Echocardiography, looks at heart scans.
Dr. Judy Hung, Associate Director of Echocardiography, looks at heart scans.
Dr. Judy Hung, Associate Director of Echocardiography, looks at heart scans.

Explore This Treatment Program

Care During COVID-19

Our dedicated physicians, nurses and staff are committed to providing the best possible care. We have taken unprecedented steps to ensure office visits, procedures and surgeries are welcoming and safe. Your health and safety is our top priority.

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About the Program

The Heart Valve Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital Corrigan Minehan Heart Center provides a multidisciplinary team of experts to manage complex and common valve diseases. In this unique program, specialists in valvular heart disease, cardiac imaging, interventional cardiology, cardiac surgery and cardiac anesthesia work together to:

  • Fully diagnose and understand a patient’s valve condition
  • Determine if a patient needs an intervention on their heart valve

The options to treat heart valve disease include:

  • Medical management
  • Catheter-based procedures
  • Surgery—both minimally invasive and open surgical procedures
  • For all patients, we provide personalized and comprehensive care to determine the best and most appropriate approach to treatment.

A Convenient Process Customized to Each Patient

Our team strives to make the evaluation process convenient and efficient by coordinating care among all specialists and by quickly communicating with referring physicians. We customize each patient’s appointment to meet their specific needs.

Prior to a patient's initial visit, Heart Valve Program physicians collect and review all records and imaging studies to determine what additional tests or consults are needed, and when possible, to schedule those appointments on the same day.

A patient's initial evaluation includes a full assessment, with a determination of whether or not an intervention is necessary, and if so, which procedure is most appropriate for the patient's specific condition.

Conditions We Treat

Our physicians have seen the full spectrum of heart valve disorders and are experienced in treating the following conditions:

  • Valve conditions originating at birth (congenital valve diseases)
  • Damage to valves caused by rheumatic fever (rheumatic valve diseases)
  • Weakening or aging of the valve (degenerative valve disease)
  • Valve conditions related to abnormal function of the heart muscle (secondary valve disease)
  • Infection or inflammation of a heart valve (valve endocarditis)
  • Complications from artificial heart valves
  • Routine management of artificial heart valves

Treatments & Procedures

Interventional cardiologists within the Heart Valve Program are leaders in catheter-based approaches to valve disease and perform a range of procedures, including:

  • Mitral and aortic valvuloplasty for stenosis
  • Insertion of closure devices for prosthetic paravalvular leaks

Our expert cardiac surgeons offer the following open surgical procedures:

  • Minimally invasive mitral valve repair for mitral valve regurgitation
  • Valve repair surgery (mitral, aortic and tricuspid valve reconstruction)
  • Valve replacement surgery (mechanical and bioprosthetic valve replacement, including homografts and stentless prostheses)
  • Annular enlargement procedures for aortic valve replacement in small hearts
  • Valve-sparing aortic root replacement
  • Apico-aortic conduits for aortic stenosis

Patients also have the opportunity to participate in clinical trials for new procedures, including minimally invasive replacement of aortic valves (TAVR/TAVI)

Making a Mark on the Field of Cardiology

Heart Valve Program physicians have made breakthroughs in diagnosing heart valve diseases. In the late 1980s, our physicians helped redefine the criteria needed to diagnose mitral valve prolapse using echocardiography. Mitral valve prolapse is a condition that occurs when the valve between the left upper chamber and the left lower chamber of the heart doesn't close properly. By redefining these criteria, our physicians helped to drastically reduce the number of misdiagnosed patients in the United States. Today our physicians are continuing research on mitral valve prolapse, but focusing on cardiac genetics and its tie in to the condition.

Innovative Research

Our Heart Valve Program experts are conducting groundbreaking research and clinical trials to improve the care of individuals with heart disease. Clinical trials and studies currently underway include:

  • PORTICO transcatheter aortic valve system trial
  • COAPT trial for individuals with mitral valve regurgitation and are not appropriate candidates for surgery
  • Trial for patients with secondary mitral regurgitation
  • Metabolomics trial to predict outcomes in patients with valvular heart disease

Patients interested in participating in a clinical trial should reach out to their doctor directly for more information.

Patient Resources

Mass General is dedicated to ensuring that people understand their health care choices and have the necessary information to make decisions affecting their health and wellbeing. The related support and wellness information listed below can play a role in treatment options.

Patient Guide to Cardiac Surgery

Patient Guide to Cardiac Surgery

What to expect before, during and after your surgery at the Corrigan Minehan Heart Center

FAQs: Cardiac Anesthesia

FAQs: Cardiac Anesthesia

A guide of what to expect before, during and after cardiac anesthesia.

Patient education page
Family Guide to Cardiac Surgery

Family Guide to Cardiac Surgery

Support and guidance during a family member's open-heart surgery or transplantation.

Contact the Corrigan Minehan Heart Center

Call or email us to learn more, or request an appointment online.