Echocardiographic evaluation of prosthetic heart valves

Curr Cardiol Rep. 2015 Jun;17(6):48. doi: 10.1007/s11886-015-0602-z.


The specific flow pattern and imaging features of prosthetic heart valves poses major challenges for the Doppler echocardiographic assessment of prosthetic valve structure and function. A comprehensive approach that integrates several semi-quantitative and quantitative parameters obtained from multiple views is key to appropriately detect and quantitate prosthetic valve dysfunction and complications. In patients with prosthetic valves, and particularly in those with mitral prostheses, transesophageal echocardiography is often required to confirm and/or complement information obtained by transthoracic echocardiography. Three-dimensional echocardiography may provide incremental information for the identification of the underlying etiology of prosthetic valve stenosis or regurgitation. Transcatheter aortic valve implantation has rapidly expanded in the past 10 years and paravalvular regurgitation is frequent following this procedure. Given that paravalvular regurgitant jets are often multiple, irregular, and eccentric, the grading of this type of regurgitation is particularly challenging and requires an integrative multiwindow, multiplane, multiparametric approach.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Constriction, Pathologic / diagnostic imaging
  • Echocardiography*
  • Heart Valve Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Heart Valve Prosthesis / adverse effects*
  • Heart Valve Prosthesis / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Prosthesis Failure
  • Thrombosis / diagnostic imaging
  • Treatment Outcome