Written By: Adam Pick, Patient Advocate, Author & Website Founder
Page last updated: February 23, 2022
By Adam Pick on March 4, 2019
By Adam Pick on October 24, 2017
Aortic stenosis is a wildly misunderstood form of heart disease that impacts 12% of the elderly population. The disease is often mis-diagnosed and often under-treated. This narrowing of the aortic valve is commonly referred to as an “insidious” disease considering (i) its symptoms are regularly and incorrectly discounted to normal aging processes and (ii) patients can be asymptomatic. As the disease can have fatal implications, I’ve also heard several doctors call aortic stenosis a “silent killer”.
By Adam Pick on September 15, 2016
I’ll never forget when my cardiologist said to me, “Adam, The calcium on your valve is causing serious problems. Your valve is stenotic. You need a new valve.” In that moment, I was overwhelmed with emotions and… questions. Some of the questions were, “What do you mean calcium on the valve?” and “What is stenosis?” and “OMG! Do I really need heart surgery?”
Surgeon Q&A: “Can Aortic Stenosis and Aortic Regurgitation Result in Over Exertion & High Stress?” Asks Mark
By Adam Pick on December 12, 2014
I just received a great question from Mark about symptoms and potential, patient limitations relating to aortic stenosis and aortic regurgitation.
By Adam Pick on June 30, 2014
Ask the Expert: The Impact of Cancer & Radiation Therapy on Heart Valve Function with Dr. Luis Castro
By Adam Pick on December 12, 2013
Since launching this website, I have met many patients who experience valvular disorders after radiation therapy for cancer. I was curious to learn more about the connection between cancer, radiation treatment and heart valve disease, so I contacted Dr. Luis Castro, a leading heart valve surgeon from Sequoia Hospital Heart & Vascular Institute in Redwood City, California.
By Adam Pick on April 1, 2013
Considering that aortic stenosis is one of the most common forms of heart valve disease, I get a lot of great questions about it. The questions range from “What is aortic stenosis?” to “What are the causes of aortic stenosis?” to “Is the disease dangerous?”
By Adam Pick on March 5, 2013
A common question I receive from patients diagnosed with aortic stenosis is, “Can this disease really be fatal?”
By Adam Pick on January 15, 2013
I just received an interesting question from Gwen about the treatment of calcified heart valves.
By Adam Pick on August 29, 2012
As many of you have shared in this blog and our online community, the process of being diagnosed with heart valve disease can be an isolating experience. So you know, that is why I started this website five years ago. I wanted to connect patients with similar disorders so that we could learn from, relate to and empower each other.
By Adam Pick on August 10, 2012
Over the past few weeks, I’ve received several emails from patients about the benefits of Vitamin K2 specific to heart disease.
“If I Have Moderate Aortic Stenosis, Why Should I Wait To Have Valve Replacement Surgery?” Asks Paul
By Adam Pick on January 25, 2012
By Adam Pick on June 8, 2011
I just received an interesting question from Peter about the progression of aortic stenosis. Peter writes, “Adam, I was diagnosed with moderate aortic stenosis two years ago. Unfortunately, I lost my job and have not had an echo in several years. I’m experiencing shortness of breath. Is it possible that the severity of stenosis has progressed that quickly?”
By Adam Pick on February 26, 2011
I recently received an interesting question from Paul about aortic stenosis and nutrition. Paul writes, “Hi Adam – I’m in my 40’s and just diagnosed with a severely leaking valve. I was told I need a mechanical valve or I will drop dead in 2 to 3 years. I do not want to take Coumadin. Is it possible for patients to enter a natural program — via a qualified nutritionalist — which may actually stimulate tissue growth around the valve, thus fixing the cause rather than treating the symptoms?”
By Adam Pick on August 25, 2010
Here’s an interesting question from Julie about heart valve stenosis and enlarged hearts.
By Adam Pick on July 22, 2010
By Adam Pick on July 6, 2010
I just received an interesting question from Tanya about calcified heart valve leaflets.
By Adam Pick on July 2, 2010
I just received a question from Emma about the normal size of an aortic valve.
By Adam Pick on April 27, 2010
Emma just emailed me an interesting question about aortic valve stenosis and the rate at which this form of heart valve disease progresses.