A Method for the Assessment of Mitral Valve Regurgitation Grade and Severity

Open Medicine Journal 29 June 2020 REVIEW ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874220302007010013



Previous grading and severity scores of MR were based on a mix of objective echocardiographic data and subjective findings such as the presence or absence of symptoms. There is a need for a grade - and a severity -score for Mitral Valve Regurgitation (MR) that is based purely on objective findings and avoids the ambiguity of labelling the same degree of MR differently according to symptoms severity and/or the underlying etiology.


We reviewed published reports regarding MR severity and grades and provided a method for the assessment of MR severity and grades based purely on objective data regardless of the symptom(s) and/or underlying cause(s) of MR. Objective Echocardiographic and/or Cardiac Magnetic Resonance (CMR) findings of Vena Contracta (VC) size in cm2, Effective Regurgitant Orifice area (ERO) in cm2, Effective Regurgitant Volume (ERV) in mls/beat, and Regurgitation Fraction (RF) as a percentage of the left ventricular stroke volume, were given a score value of A, B, C or D with increasing severity, thus ranging from the mildest degree“A” to most severe “D”.


As summarized in Table 4, MR severity ranged between 4 “As” to 4 “Ds”. Further elaboration regarding the parameter(s) most severely affected may be added to the score value, e.g., scoring MR with a VC = 0.60 cm2 associated with EROA = 0.4cm2, ERV = 60mls and RF = 45% will be 2D (EROA and ERV) MR, thereby avoiding overlap between various degrees of MR and/or further data manipulation to make other parameters fit one grade of MR or another.


Applying this scoring/grading system to Echocardiographic and/or CMR studies of patients with mitral valve regurgitation will enhance our endeavors to use a clear and unified language regarding MR severity without compromising the quality of Echocardiographic or CMR findings and/or reporting.

Keywords: Mitral, Valve, Regurgitation, Severity, Grade, Score, Transcatheter, Repair, Replacement.
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