The challenge of valvular heart disease: When is it time to operate?

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ABSTRACTIn patients with valve disease, operating too soon exposes them to unnecessary surgical risk, but waiting too long may lead to cardiac damage and poor outcome. When to refer a patient for surgery depends on which valve is involved, the type of defect (stenosis or regurgitation), the degree of the defect, and the degree of symptoms or functional impairment.


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