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Aortic valve with stenosis

Location of aortic valve in heart with detail of normal open and closed valve and one with stenosis

Normal aortic valve. A normal aortic valve opens fully to let blood flow into the aorta. The aortic valve has three flaps that work like a one-way gate. When the heart pumps, the aortic valve opens to allow oxygen-rich blood to flow from the left ventricle into the aorta. When the heart rests between beats, the aortic valve closes to keep blood from flowing backward into the heart.

Aortic valve stenosis. With aortic valve stenosis, the valve cannot open as wide as normal. Because the valve does not open as wide, the heart must work harder to pump blood through the valve.

Current as of: December 16, 2019

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Rakesh K. Pai MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine
Michael P. Pignone MD, MPH, FACP - Internal Medicine

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