Can Pulmonary Stenosis Be Treated Naturally

The condition known as pulmonary valve stenosis is one that many people want to know more about. It can occur as a result of a related illness, or it can be present from birth.

In either case, there is plenty to know about this condition.

And the more you know, the better.

What is Pulmonary Stenosis?


This is when there is a deformity either on, or near to the pulmonary valve. The pulmonary valve is near the right ventricle, otherwise known as the lower-right heart chamber.

pulmonary stenosis diagram

The primary function of this valve is to slow blood flow to the heart.

When the valve is affected by stenosis, certain symptoms may affect you, ranging from mild to severe. Although mild cases of the condition do not get progressively worse, a severe occurrence of stenosis can.

On the upside, treatment is usually very successful, and so anyone who gets pulmonary stenosis shouldn’t worry too much.

The Symptoms of Pulmonary Stenosis


Symptoms of this condition vary. Some people who have a mild case of the condition may exhibit no symptoms, while others may notice issues for the first time during exercise.

over work guy

It really depends on the size and scale of the obstruction. Signs of the problem include:

  • Fatigue
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath, especially when exercising
  • Loss of consciousness / fainting
  • Heart murmur

If you (or your child) exhibit any of the symptoms above, then you should go to see a doctor for a check-up.

If it is pulmonary stenosis, or if you have another heart problem then it is important to act quickly. Getting a prompt evaluation of the issue and appropriate treatment can make all the difference.

Causes of Pulmonary Stenosis


Most often, pulmonary valve stenosis happens during fetal development, as the pulmonary valve does not grow properly. It’s not known exactly what causes this to happen.

pulmonary stenosis cause

Babies born with this condition may also suffer from some congenital heart abnormalities.

The valve consists of three pieces of thin tissues, which are called cusps. These are neatly arranged in a little circle.

As the heart beats, the valve opens towards the pulmonary artery. This allows blood to flow out from the heart, towards the lungs. The cusps then close again to prevent any blood from flowing back into the right ventricle.

However, when you have pulmonary stenosis, at least one of the cusps may be too thick or defective in some way. This means that the valve is not able to function correctly, which restricts the blood flow.

As this condition normally develops during pregnancy, we don’t know a lot about the risk factors that contribute to it.

That being said, there are some procedures and conditions that may increase the chances of developing pulmonary stenosis in later life, such as:

Noonan syndrome

Carcinoid syndrome

Rheumatic fever


Complications of Pulmonary Stenosis


If you have pulmonary stenosis, and it isn’t treated properly and in good time, then you run the risk of developing some complications, which can be more serious.

Here are some common complications:

Infection

heart image

Any problems with the heart valve can increase the chances of getting a bacterial infection in your heart, especially in the sensitive inner lining.

Heart-pumping Problems

pulmonary stenosis

If the stenosis is quite severe, the right ventricle must pump a lot harder to keep blood flowing to the pulmonary artery. This higher pressure can cause ventricular hypertrophy as the heart muscle thickens on the right side. Eventually, your heart will get stiff and may grow weaker.

Heart Failure

heart image

If your right ventricle can’t pump blood efficiently, then the heart may fail. This comes with a host of complications, including swelling in the abdomen and legs, as well as fatigue and chest pains.

Irregular Heartbeat

heart pulse

The medical term is arrhythmia, and you’re more likely to suffer from it if you have pulmonary stenosis. On the bright side, this isn’t life-threatening if your stenosis is only mild.


How is Pulmonary Stenosis Diagnosed?


As this condition normally occurs at birth, people are usually diagnosed during childhood. However, sometimes the condition isn’t detected until much later.

It might be discovered during a routine check with your local doctor, starting with a heart murmur, which is then confirmed with some follow-up tests.

There are multiple tests that medical staff can use to check for pulmonary stenosis:

Echocardiogram

ECHOCARDIOGRAM

Sound waves are bounced off the heart. This produces moving images, which medical staff can view using video technology.

This enables them to inspect the valve, and the location of the stenosis, as well as verifying the size and functionality of the right ventricle.

Electrocardiogram

ELECTROCARDIOGRAM

In this procedure, medical staff will place patches on the patient’s chest, ankles and wrists. These patches have electrodes, which measure the electrical activity in the heart. This is then recorded on paper.

An electrocardiogram helps doctors determine if the right ventricle’s muscular wall has got thicker.

Other Imaging Tests

IMAGING TESTS

Common tests to confirm a diagnosis of pulmonary stenosis include a CT scan and an MRI.

Treatment of Pulmonary Stenosis


When you undergo testing for pulmonary valve stenosis, the doctor will measure blood pressure. By comparing the difference in blood pressure between the pulmonary artery and the right ventricle, they can classify the severity of the stenosis.

If it’s mild, you won’t need surgery, but will be advised to get regular check-ups.

In more serious cases, you may require some surgery, such as the following invasive procedures.

Balloon Valvuloplasty

heart

First of all, you will get a cardiac catheterization, which is when a small tube is threaded through one of the veins in your arm or leg, and guided to your heart. This is then injected with a liquid dye, which helps the medical team identify any blockage sites.

Using the same access point, the doctors will thread another tube with a deflated balloon on the end. At the site of the blockage, they inflate the balloon to widen the valve, which helps the blood flow increase.

After the issue is resolved, the balloon is deflated and the tube is withdrawn.

One potential side-effect of this procedure is that blood leaks backwards, through the valve into the heart. There is also a chance for infection or clots to develop during such a procedure.

Open-heart Surgery

heart surgery

If the valvuloplasty won’t be enough, there may be no other choice but to have open-heart surgery.

As terrifying as it sounds, the success rates are pretty high, and getting an artificial replacement valve not only solves the stenosis problem, but also gives medical staff a chance to address any other congenital heart defect you might have while they have you opened up.


Natural Home Remedies for Pulmonary Stenosis


There isn’t a lot that you can actively do to prevent the onset of pulmonary stenosis. That being said, you can make some changes to your lifestyle to ensure you reduce the risk of any complications.

old women excercising

If you’ve already had endocarditis, the doctor may prescribe some antibiotics just to lower the risk of infection in the heart’s inner lining. But in the majority of cases, antibiotics will not be needed.

The best thing you can do is adapt your lifestyle to provide for a healthy heart. You can speak to your doctor to get more specific advise to your own situation, but here are some good tips:

  • Quit smoking if you haven’t already
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet, which includes a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, low-fat dairy produce, lean meat, and whole grains
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Exercise regularly

If you’re pregnant and have pulmonary stenosis, it’s no reason to panic.

Generally, it’s not an issue. If your condition is severe, there is a higher chance of complication in labor, but you can have a balloon surgery during pregnancy if needed.


Pulmonary Stenosis is Not the End of the World


If you or your child is diagnosed with pulmonary stenosis, it may be a dark time for the family. However, with proper education of the condition, you’ll soon see that it is far from a death sentence.

People with this condition can live a very normal and fulfilling life. If the condition is more severe, then there may be a need for some regular check-ups and some lifestyle changes.

However, the outlook is good.

No matter what happens, with some deep conversations with doctors you will be able to get all the information you need along every step of the way.

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