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Understanding heart muscle dysfunction in valvular heart disease

Dr Mayooran Namasivayam, Institution: University of New South Wales

2020 Postdoctoral Fellowship

Years funded: 2021-2022


When the aortic valve, a main valve in the heart, stiffens and becomes restricted, it can lead to dysfunction of the heart muscle, even at the early stages of disease.  Aortic stenosis is a major cause of morbidity and mortality globally and is projected to increase in prevalence in an ageing society. The disease leads to irreversible scarring and impairment of left ventricular function, commencing at early disease stages. This study aims to evaluate the mechanics of heart muscle dysfunction over time in patients with restricted aortic valves (aortic stenosis) in the early stages of disease.  The study will seek to identify how heart muscle performance can decline over time in these patients and identify which patients are at particularly elevated risk and should therefore undergo closer surveillance.  The clinical significance of the study is to better assess and manage patients with early stages of valvular heart disease before significant heart muscle damage ensues, the impacts of which could be devastating.

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