An annuloplasty is a procedure to tighten or reinforce the ring (annulus) around a valve in the heart. It may be done during other procedures to repair a heart valve.
Why it's done
An annuloplasty is done to reshape, reinforce or tighten the ring around a heart valve.
The ring around a valve in the heart (annulus) can widen and change from its normal shape. This may occur when the heart is enlarged or if you have a leaky valve. When the ring is widened, the valve flaps attached to the ring may not open and close correctly. As a result, blood can leak backward through the valve.
An annuloplasty may be recommended to fix the valve. Doctors may perform annuloplasty alone or with other techniques to repair a heart valve.
What you can expect
In an annuloplasty, the doctor measures the size of the existing ring. Then the doctor sews a band to the existing ring around the valve. The band may be rigid or flexible.
This procedure can be done during open-heart surgery or minimally invasive heart surgery, which involves smaller incisions.
Researchers are studying less-invasive ways to perform annuloplasty and other heart valve procedures using long, thin tubes.