What is the mitral valve

The mitral valve is one of the 4 gates inside the heart. Its function is to keep blood flowing in the same direction throughout the cardiac cycle.

The mitral valve is a complex structure made up of different parts:

  • Two leaflets, the anterior and posterior: they are the gates that open and close. They are implanted in a fibrous ring and their opening and closing movements are regulated by chordae tendineae.
  • A fibrous ring: This is a rigid structure that forms part of the skeleton of the heart and functions as a support point for the leaflets for their movement. It is in continuity with the aortic and tricuspid valves and separates the atrium from the left ventricle.
  • Tendinous cords: They are inserted on one side in the papillary muscles and on the other in the border of the leaflets. They are essential for maintaining the internal architecture of the heart and its contractile capacity, as well as for correct valve closure.
  • Two papillary muscles: they are muscular projections inside the left ventricle and constitute the pillars of support for the chordae tendineae.
  • Left ventricle: all structures rest on the left ventricle.

Functioning of the mitral valve

Valvular opening and closing is performed by a synchronous movement of all its components. It is this synchrony that minimizes the wear and tear of such fragile structures as the mitral leaflets and allows them to withstand millions of cardiac cycles throughout life.

Therefore, when repairing the mitral valve, it is necessary to act on all the components in order to restore the original balance.