Discharge Instructions for Aortic Valve Stenosis

You have been diagnosed with aortic valve stenosis. This means the aortic valve in your heart is stiff or remains in a near-closed position and has trouble opening. Because of this, your heart has to work harder to push the blood through the valve. In some cases, this extra work makes the muscle of the heart thicken. The extra work can tire the heart and cause its muscle to weaken over time. This condition often changes very slowly and doesn't need to be treated. But in some people, it may get worse faster and need to be treated. Some people can control their stenosis with medicines. In some severe cases, surgery is needed.

Home care

  • Check with your doctor before taking any over-the-counter medicines, herbal products, or vitamins.

  • Take your medicines exactly as directed. Don’t skip doses.

  • Keep all follow-up appointments. Some people with aortic stenosis don’t have symptoms. Others need close follow-up and surgery.

Lifestyle changes

  • Maintain a healthy weight. Get help to lose any extra pounds.

  • Ask your doctor if an exercise program is right for you. Some people with aortic stenosis need to be very careful about exercise as it can result in fainting.

  • Break the smoking habit. Enroll in a stop-smoking program to improve your chances of success.

Follow-up care

Make a follow-up appointment with your healthcare provider, or as directed.

When to call 911

Call 911 or go to the emergency room right away if you have any of the following:

  • Chest pain or shortness of breath

  • Weakness in the muscles of your face, arms, or legs

  • Trouble speaking

  • Rapid pulse or pounding heartbeat

  • Fainting or dizziness

  • Sudden vertigo

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