Objective: This review discusses the latest developments in selected clinical features and catheter-based therapy of mitral stenosis.
Data sources: English-language journal articles and reviews in the clinical and epidemiological literature as related to mitral valve stenosis from 1965 through March 1993, identified by bibliography review and expert consultation.
Study selection: Selected studies included clinical trials with adequate patient population description and short- and long-term (5 years) follow-up for topics related to mitral valve stenosis in the clinical literature.
Data extraction: Two reviewers participated in extracting the data with the aim of presenting a balanced and comprehensive review of the subject.
Data synthesis and conclusions: The main conclusions are (1) mitral stenosis should no longer be viewed as a largely "geriatric disease" in the United States due to a recent inflow many young immigrants from countries where rheumatic fever continues partially or wholly unabated; (2) clinical and anatomical features of mitral stenosis are age-dependent; when clinical presentation occurs at 30 vs 70 years of age, for example, the degree of valve obstruction may be similar but differences exist in the frequency of atrial fibrillation, the magnitude of reduction in cardiac output, the degree of valve deformity and calcification, and the frequency of coexistent coronary artery disease; and (3) mitral stenosis therapy has undergone a reorientation with the introduction of percutaneous mitral balloon valvotomy, which has proven to be safe, cost-effective, and to provide short- and long-term improvements in symptomatic and hemodynamic status in selected patients.