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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Miscellaneous Cardiology Topics

Question: Split heart sounds: what could they mean?

 betty123 - Sat Sep 15, 2007 11:04 pm

I am a 27-year-old woman and I've been told for years that I have a heart murmur, but I was just recently told it's actually a split heart sound. I get heart palpitations from time to time and really strange abnormal rhythms rarely. I also get dizzy and weak and sometimes short of breath when I exercise. I exercise a lot so I'm in pretty good shape, and these symptoms get better when I'm in better shape and exercise more. I also have mild asthma, so it could just be that. But another thing is, my friends tell me sometimes I look greyish, especially around my lips, even blue. What else could this be? I had an echocardiogram abroad where it was much cheaper, and the doctor said he didn't see anything wrong, but I don't trust him because he also said he didn't hear a murmur, and every other doctor does. I looked at the echo printout and it says everything is normal--chamber size, contraction, etc--except, "trivial tricuspid regurgitation, trivial mitral regurgitation." I know I'll eventually have to pony up the money and get an echo in the states, but in the meantime, what do you think is going on? Thanks so much!
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Mon Sep 17, 2007 12:23 am

User avatar Hi Betty123,

Split heart sounds are a normal finding. They occur because the blood pressure in the body is higher than the blood pressure in the lungs. This causes the valves of the heart to close at a slightly different time leading to the split sounds heard.

Murmurs are very common. They can be innocent and harmless or can be related to a more severe problem. Based on these echo results, they may be hearing an innocent murmur or possibly a murmur related to the regurgitation.

Follow up with your doctor is important.

Best wishes.

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