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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Valvular Heart Diseases

Question: I have mitral valve prolapse and HLA-B27 positive

 kayk2 - Sun May 03, 2009 4:08 pm

I have moderate mitral valve prolapse and am HLA-B27 positive. My daughter, sister and father have AS, though I do not. How concerned should i be about my heart?
 John Kenyon, CNA - Tue May 12, 2009 1:10 pm

User avatar Hello --

First, as I'm sure you understand, being HLA-B27 positive means you have inherited a genetically-transmitted autoimmune collagen disease which can cause SA, but fortunately for you has not. You may just have one non-working gene or be a carrier only, but you are still subject to other potential problems from this, including Reiter's syndrome. None of this directly affects your heart, but MVP is often seen in people with this disorder because it is common to various diseases of the connective tissues. "Moderate"" MVP is a vague finding, so you will need to be followed at least annually for this, just to be certain it's not progressing. Most often it will not, but can sometimes in association with this defect. Not a serious concern, at least for the present, just bears some watching.

In general being HLA-B27 positive will affect specific connective tissue resulting in AS. You don't have that, so you're ahead of the game. MVP, again, is a slightly greater concern (for possible progression) than in the general population, but, again, "moderate" is a very vague and even evasive term, so this will just need to be watched over time. As for other structural heart disease or corornary artery disease, you are, by the literature, not at any greater risk than the GP, although with any autoimmune disease there is a potential for inflammatory processes to occur in other parts of the body, including coronary vessels. In the case of HLA-B27 the inflammation is generally very specific and results almost exclusively in SA, so I'd say you're in a pretty good postion generally right now, and would not be overly concerned about heart disease, although prudent, healthy habits benefit anyone in that area. Also, do be sure to have an echocardiogram at least once yearly.

I hope this is helpful to you. Good luck with this, and follow up with us here as needed.

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