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In aortic valve regurgitation, the aortic valve does not close completely. The valve lets blood leak back (regurgitate) into the heart.
In a normal heart, the aortic valve opens to let oxygen-rich blood flow from the left ventricle into the aorta. The aortic valve closes completely when the heart rests between beats. The closed valve stops blood from flowing backward into the heart. But in aortic valve regurgitation, the aortic valve does not close completely. So with each heartbeat some of the blood pumped into the aorta leaks back into the left ventricle.
Last Revised: November 2, 2011
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Rakesh K. Pai, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology & Stephen Fort, MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology
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