Managing Mitral Valve Prolapse Without Medication

Managing Mitral Valve Prolapse Without Medication

Out of nowhere you may suddenly be struggling with odd symptoms you cannot explain. Symptoms such as excessive sweating, dizziness, shortness of breath and even panic attacks which you never experienced before. On top of it all, you may briefly feel your heart randomly palpitating as if it is trying to “right” itself and then going back to normal. These could be signs of mitral valve prolapse (MVP) which is a benign condition (not a disease) that the NYU Langone Medical Center explains,

“The mitral valve sits at the opening between the left atrium and left ventricle, and opens and closes so that blood flows only in one direction (atrium to ventricle). In MVP, the mitral valve fails to make a proper snug fit, and instead billows (prolapses) back into the atrium, making a sound that can be heard through a stethoscope. MVP is generally benign. Sometimes, however, the mitral valve fits so poorly that a large amount of blood leaks back from the ventricle to the atrium. This is called “mitral regurgitation,” and it can be dangerous, eventually requiring surgery.”

It affects about 2% of Americans and managing mitral valve prolapse without medication is a possibility. However, it is imperative to be examined by your doctor to determine if indeed it is MVP that you are experiencing and if foregoing medication is allowable.

Low Mag

Magnesium deficiency is rare, yet it still can happen and has been considered as a valid possible cause of MVP. Published by the National Institutes of Health, researchers at the Department of Cardiology, Grochowski Hospital, Warsaw, Poland concluded that, “many patients with heavily symptomatic MVP have low serum magnesium, and supplementation of this ion leads to improvement in most symptoms along with a decrease in catecholamine [important hormones] excretion.” Have your doctor check your blood to see if you are low in magnesium and if you are, a daily supplement may be recommended. Taking an improper dosage of magnesium can cause gastrointestinal difficulties and may contraindicate with other medicines so make sure your doctor prescribes the proper dosage.

Goodbye Caffeine and Tobacco

Yes, you cannot get through the day without it but caffeine is a major trigger for MVP. As you probably know it is a stimulant that revs up the heart creating escalated symptoms. In addition to coffee check that other dietary choices like teas, candy, energy drinks, energy bars and even some aspirin does not contain caffeine. Also, it is no brainer that tobacco is bad for you but many do not realize that it plays a major role in artery constriction and also acts as a stimulant creating eventual cardiovascular challenges in healthy people. If you have MVP, the effects can be more intense. The University of Chicago Medicine education page comments, “In most cases, limiting stimulants such as caffeine and cigarettes is all that is needed to control symptoms.”

Go to the B

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) and Vitamin B (niacin) supplementation may help with MVP symptoms as they have been shown to reduce lactic acid in the blood. This can possibly reduce the episodes of panic and anxiety attacks associated with MVP.

Valerian Root

This powerful herb has been used for centuries in combating a variety of ailments including cardiovascular challenges. It has been theorized that it is capable of calming the central nervous system as well as able to relax smooth muscle tissue and relieve insomnia, all components of MVP.

Meditative Practices

Breathing is not as simple as you thought. Many people are mouth breathers meaning that they tend to gulp air throughout the day. This can cause inadequate oxygen intake as well as fill the gut with gas producing, bloating air. The proper way to breathe is in through your nose and out through your mouth pushing out the belly, not expanding the chest. Meditative practices could be highly beneficial in managing mitral valve prolapse without medication through proper breathing techniques.

  • Tai chi – Slow martial art movements that concentrate on breathing and mental alertness.
  • Yoga – Start with a beginners class if you never tried it. It is physically and mentally beneficial opening up your body to allow stuck energy to release and re-flow.
  • Pranayama – Life energy breathing exercises that target the autonomic nervous system regulating blood pressure and heart rate.
  • Qi Gong (chee gong) – This is an ancient Chinese practice that also involves breathing and specific energy manipulating movements.

Managing mitral valve prolapse without medication should be attempted under the guidance of a medical professional. Some of the above suggestions may work and are worth a try as long as you are allowed by your doctor. For some sufferers, medication for MVP may be required.