Topic: Heart Basics

Your heart is a powerful organ that is responsible for pumping blood throughout your body. When it is diseased or damaged it not only impacts the heart’s ability to function, but can also impact overall health.

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    • Diagnosis, Treatment and Action Guide for Aortic Stenosis
      CardioSmart’s About My Aortic Stenosis guide was created by the American College of Cardiology to help patients and caregivers better understand Aortic Stenosis. The downloadable document provides information to help you track your symptoms, figure out a treatment plan and know what questions to ask your physician. To view this helpful guide, access the link below.
    • Resource Library
      Visit, an Edwards LifeSciences website, to access downloadable materials that include information on the basics of aortic stenosis and TAVR, a doctor discussion guide, and much more. Available in both English and Spanish versions.
    • Personal Stories from American Heart Association's Heart Valve Ambassadors
      Learn more about the stories of American Heart Association’s group of heart valve disease ambassadors including, seven heart valve disease survivors and one caregiver who represent the wide variety of people who are affected by heart valve disease. Read about each ambassador’s unique story here.
    • Surgeon Finder Tool provides an easy-to-use and interactive tool to help find, research, and contact more than 1,500 patient-recommended heart valve surgeons in 30 countries. Search by your zip code, city, state, country, surgeon’s last name, or patient reviews.  
    • Elaine and Blake Webster's story
      Heart valve surgery is not a journey that a patient takes alone. It requires a strategic team of doctors and dedicated caregivers to help the patient feel most comfortable and supported while overcoming new and unique challenges. Elaine Webster has personally grown to be the ideal caregiver, friend, patient advocate, nurse, and confidant throughout her husband, Blake’s journey through his first major arrhythmia, to mitral-valve surgery, and finally onto recovery. Through her first-hand experience as a caregiver for sixteen years, Elaine has provided valuable insight and advice in her book, Heartfelt. Learn more and access Elaine’s book, Heartfelt here.    
    • University of Michigan Heart Valve Disease Website
      Heart valve disease is a condition in which one or more of your heart’s four valves — the tricuspid, pulmonary, mitral and aortic — don’t work correctly. This website from the University of Michigan highlights the different kinds of valve disease, as well as treatment options and patient resources.
    • Your Cardiovascular System from SCAI
      The first step toward preventing and managing heart disease is understanding how your cardiovascular system works.  Learn more from–a resource of SCAI.
    • Valve Stenosis: When a Heart Valve is Too Tight
      This short video from the American Heart Association gives a brief overview of the different kinds of heart valve stenosis. Visit for more information about valve problems.
    • Study Links High LDL Cholesterol to Aortic Valve Disease
      A 2014 study published in JAMA claims to have found evidence to support a causal association between high levels of “bad” cholesterol and aortic valve stenosis – a form of aortic valve disease in which the valve is narrowed, restricting blood flow from the heart.
    • Valve Regurgitation: When a Heart Valve Leaks Video
      This American Heart Association video explains valve regurgitation, or a leaky heart valve. If you’ve been told you have a leaky valve, here’s a simple explanation of what it means and why it matters to your heart health.
    • Cleveland Clinic Video on How the Heart Works
      This simple, easy-to-understand video gives an overview of how the heart functions.
    • Cleveland Clinic Heart Valve Disease Treatment Guide
      Use this guide as a resource as you examine your treatment options. It covers causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatments of valve disease. The guide also explains the different types of valve repair surgery.
    • Heart and Vascular Dictionary from Cleveland Clinic
      The Heart and Vascular Institute at the Cleveland Clinic brings you an in-depth dictionary with definitions of 100s of words associated with valve disease.
    • Diagnosing Heart Valve Disease Video
      This video from St. Jude Medical discusses the different diagnostic tests, including ECG/EKG, ECHO, MRI, Chest X-ray, and more.
    • How a Heart Valve Works
      This video from St. Jude Medical gives an inside view of the heart and explains how healthy heart valves function.
    • Minimally-Invasive Aortic Valve Replacement Information from Johns Hopkins Medicine
      This website from Johns Hopkins Medicine Heart & Vascular Institute gives a brief overview of the aortic valve, the different kinds of aortic valve disease, and the minimally invasive forms of valve repair and replacement.