Heart Murmur Treatment
Most heart murmurs are not life-threatening, heart murmur treatment depends on the underlying cause. Heart murmurs are abnormal “swishing” sounds during a heartbeat cycle that are made by turbulent blood near or in your heart. A doctor can hear these sounds with a stethoscope during a physical exam. Some people are born with heart murmurs, others develop them later in life.
- Innocent heart murmurs requirement no treatment. An innocent heart murmur occurs when blood flows rapidly through the heart, usually due to rigorous physical activity, hyperthyroidism, fever, natural aging or changes due to heart surgery. Some innocent heart murmurs may be monitored to ensure there is no underlying heart problems. Most times they go away over time or occasionally recur without causing any further problems.
- Abnormal heart murmurs usually require some type of treatment. Abnormal heart murmurs tend to result from a heart problem, such as a hole in the heart, heart valve abnormality, rheumatic fever, mitral valve prolapse, endocarditis, and valve calcification.
- Medication prescribed for heart murmur treatment depends on heart problem causing it. Digoxin (digitalis) is prescribed if the heart murmur is due to a condition that weakens the heart muscle.
- A doctor may prescribe diuretics, ACE inhibitors or statins to prevent fluid buildup, control blood pressure and lower cholesterol during heart murmur treatment. Excess fluid, high cholesterol and high blood pressure can aggravate underlying conditions causing a heart murmur. Anticoagulants such as Plavix, Coumadin or aspirin may also be prescribed to heart murmur patients to prevent the formation of blood clots, which can cause a heart attack or stroke.
- Some heart murmur treatment may require catheterization or surgery to treat the underlying heart condition causing the murmur. Such conditions include heart valve abnormalities, holes in the heart or damaged or impaired blood vessels.
A person who is concerned about his heart murmur should talk to his doctor. The doctor can conduct tests to see if there are any underlying causes of the heart murmur and determine the best possible treatment options.