Mitral valve prolapse

Dis Mon. 1987 Sep;33(9):481-534. doi: 10.1016/0011-5029(87)90005-8.


Mitral valve prolapse is a common mitral valve disorder manifested clinically as a midsystolic click and/or a late systolic murmur (the click-murmur syndrome) and pathologically as billowing or prolapsing mitral leaflets (the floppy valve syndrome). Not only is it one of the two most common congenital heart diseases and the most common valve disorder diagnosed in the United States, but it is also prevalent throughout the world. Mitral valve prolapse may be associated with a variety of other conditions or diseases. Diagnosis of mitral valve prolapse should be made on clinical grounds and, if necessary, supported by echocardiography. The majority of patients with mitral valve prolapse suffer no serious sequelae. However, major complications such as disabling angina-like chest pains, progressive mitral regurgitation, infective endocarditis, thromboembolism, serious arrhythmias, and sudden death may occur. Unless these serious complications occur, most of the patients with mitral valve prolapse need no treatment other than reassurance, including those with atypical chest pain or palpitation unconfirmed by objective data. Therapy with a beta-blocker for disabling chest pain and/or arrhythmias and antiplatelet therapy for cerebral embolic events may be indicated. In occasional patients with significant mitral regurgitation surgery may be necessary.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Echocardiography
  • Electrocardiography
  • Humans
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse* / complications
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse* / diagnosis
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse* / therapy
  • Vectorcardiography