Your heart has four valves. Their job is to make sure blood flows in the right direction and at the right speed throughout the heart. Each of these valves act like doors: They need to be properly formed and flexible, should open all the way so that the right amount of blood can pass through, and should close tightly so that no blood leaks back into the chamber. However, as people age, many of their valves may begin to degenerate and improperly open (stenosis) or improperly close (regurgitation).
Mild or moderate valve disease is usually not a serious problem. However, patients with severe valve disease may require treatment to replace failing heart valves. Yale Medicine Cardiac Surgery performs approximately 200 transcatheter aortic valve replacements (TAVRs) every year—one of the highest numbers in the country.