Munson Health
Mitral Stenosis -- Child

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(Mitral Valve Stenosis—Child)



The most common cause of mitral stenosis is rheumatic fever . This infection that may develop after strep throat or scarlet fever and can scar the heart valves. Mitral stenosis may develop 5-10 years after this infection occurs.
Less common or very rare causes include:
  • Birth defect
  • Blood clots
  • Tumors
  • Infective endocarditis
  • Other growths that block blood flow through the mitral valve


The doctor will ask about your child’s symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. The doctor may suspect mitral stenosis from:
The diagnosis will be made after observing the mitral valve itself. Images of the heart and its structures may be taken during:
The heart's abilities may also be tested with:
  • Electrocardiogram (ECG, EKG)—a record of the electrical activity of the heart
  • Stress test —test how the body responds to physical exertion


If your child has mild mitral stenosis, immediate treatment may not be needed. Your doctor will monitor your child's condition to look for potential problems. Other treatment options include:


Certain medication may be given to improve heart function. The medications may help control the heart's rhythm and prevent the build up of fluid in the body.
Antibiotics may be needed to treat certain infections.


Your child may need surgery to prevent heart damage. Common types of heart valve surgery include:

Complication Management

There are several steps your child can take to avoid some of the complications of mitral stenosis:
  • Get regular medical care. This includes basic checkups and heart tests.
  • Take antibiotics before any dental cleaning, dental work, or other invasive procedures if it is recommended by your doctor. Not all patients with mitral stenosis need antibiotics for these procedures.
  • Eat a healthy diet that is low in salt. Work with the doctor or dietician to plan a healthy diet for your child. This may help decrease the pressure in your child’s heart and improve symptoms.
  • Monitor blood pressure. Inform the doctor if your child seems to be developing high blood pressure .
Follow the doctor's instructions if your child is diagnosed with mitral stenosis.
Follow the doctor's instructions if your child is diagnosed with mitral stenosis.


Most cases of mitral stenosis can be prevented by preventing rheumatic fever:
  • Treat strep throat infections right away to avoid rheumatic fever, which can cause scarring of the heart valve.
  • Always make sure your child finishes all of the antibiotics given, even if he feels better.


American Heart Association

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute



Canadian Cardiovascular Society

Canadian Family Physician



Mitral stenosis. DynaMed website. Available at: Updated November 16, 2013. Accessed June 20, 2013.

Seattle Children’s Hospital. Mitral valve abnormalities. Seattle Children’s Hospital website. Available at: Accessed June 20, 2013.

Shipton B, Wahba H. Valvular heart disease: review and update. Am Fam Physician . 20011;63:2201.


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