What is a heart murmur?

The heart murmur can appear as a result of infections or diseases and, sometimes, it can be the prelude to a more serious coronary problem.

The heart murmur is something more common than we think among the population, you may have heard of this condition at some time or you may not even know it because it is not something that is talked about very often.

We will start by telling you that it manifests as a sound: the blood passing through the valves of the heart or through the blood vessels that are close to the heart emits a characteristic noise that is not normal, that does not resemble at all the rhythmic sound and the like to a rhythmic drum that has the heart.

This anomaly is “the murmur” and it is produced by our heartbeats due to a small defect when opening and closing the heart valves, as if the air were passing too quickly… It is therefore a signal, which sometimes is the history of a serious heart problem.

Who can get a heart murmur?

The heart murmur can manifest itself in two ways:

  • Congenital: nothing else is born, and in fact it is very common in children, although most of the time it is “innocent murmurs”, which do not require more than a follow-up to control that the heart works and grows normally.

At other times they can be abnormal congenital problems, one of the two valves of the heart (which are like two doors that allow blood flow) do not work well and can cause problems. Hence the importance of follow-ups.

  • Acquired: It tends to develop suddenly throughout our lives, and is more common in people over 50 years of age.

What are usually the causes?

The causes of a heart murmur, in addition to sometimes having a congenital history, can be due to diseases or infections that damage the valves of our heart, producing defects in our valves and leaving scars. So, we could somehow clarify the following factors:

  • -An infection.
  • -Valves heart defective.
  • -Holes in the walls of the heart (atrial septal defect or ventricular septal defect).
  • -Fever.
  • -Anemia (decrease in red blood cells).
  • – Rheumatic fever.
  • -Endocarditis.
  • -A previous heart attack that has damaged the valves of the heart.
  • All this means that the valves, these doors that precede the entrance to the heart, cannot close well or do so rigidly, preventing the correct passage of blood.

Symptoms of a heart murmur

First of all, tell you that the so-called “innocent” murmurs do not give excessive symptoms, hence the importance of the reviews, which although they are not serious, do require having them controlled.

More serious “abnormal” murmurs can cause symptoms, but this is not always the case. Anyway, we indicate the characteristics that can help you to recognize a heart problem:

  • -Be tired.
  • -Have the veins of the neck very marked and widened.
  • -Having a slightly blue skin color, especially on the fingertips.
  • -Dizziness and fainting spells.
  • -Chest pain.
  • -Don’t be too hungry.
  • -To be swollen.
  • -Sweat a lot with the slightest effort.

Types of heart murmurs

Doctors are in charge of diagnosing our murmurs and the category to which it belongs, they will analyze the volume, duration and tone, also classifying it according to its intensity:

  • Grade 1: Very faint, it is heard only with special maneuvers.
  • Grade 2: Soft murmur, easy to auscultate.
  • Grade 3: Murmur of moderate intensity, not accompanied by thrill.
  • Grade 4: Intense murmur accompanied by thrill.
  • Grade 5: Very intense murmur that can be heard by the mere contact of the stethoscope on the chest.
  • Grade 6: A murmur so intense that it can be heard without resting the stethoscope on the chest wall.

Do all murmurs imply heart disease?

No, not all murmurs are a sign of heart disease. Sometimes they are heard in our hearts simply because we have anemia or fever, and they disappear after a while.

But in any case, it is always necessary for a professional to do the pertinent analyzes to rule out, and will clarify it through the electrocardiogram and echocardiography tests: neither is invasive and will help you see the anatomy of your heart and how it works.

Your health comes first, never neglect to listen to your own body and your heart, at the slightest indication, go to your doctor.

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