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Bicuspid Aortic Valve Screening at Lurie Children’s Heart Center

October 03, 2019

One of your family members has been diagnosed with bicuspid aortic valve. What does this mean for you and the rest of your family?

A bicuspid aortic valve (BAV) is a congenital abnormality of the aortic valve that is hereditary in nature. If someone in your family has BAV, there is an approximately 1 in 10 chance someone else in the family may have this, too. Lurie Children’s and the American Heart Association recommend that other family members be screened for BAV.

Why get screened?

Current recommendations are that all first-degree relatives — parents and siblings — of a person diagnosed with BAV should be screened. If diagnosed early, BAV can be managed prior to causing symptoms or complications.

Again, many individuals with BAV do not experience symptoms until they begin to have complications, so a screening ECHO is recommended since early diagnosis is key to preventing complications.

How can I get my child get screened?

Screening for BAV requires undergoing an echocardiogram, or heart ultrasound. This test is painless and uses ultrasound waves to receive images of the heart. The images are read by a Lurie Children’s specialist to determine if your child has BAV.

Why choose the Lurie Children’s BAV Program?

We offer a unique approach to comprehensive care for children and their families affected by BAV. Our team of cardiac surgeons, cardiologists and nurses offer advanced medical and surgical treatment options, including:

  • Expert clinical care from board-certified cardiologists and cardiac surgeons, specializing in heart valve disease
  • Coordination of care with your local physicians including providing updates on your care and progress
  • Monitoring and evaluation of your BAV through the use of ECHO and/or MRI testing
  • Advanced diagnostic 4-D MRI scan giving highly detailed and advanced noninvasive images of blood flow patterns in the heart and aorta
  • An invitation for your first-degree relatives to be screened and participate in the program due to the hereditary nature of BAV
  • Access to ongoing clinical research specifically for BAV

To make an appointment, please contact our Clinical Coordinator, Becca Kraft at 312.227.4638 or e-mail BAV@luriechildrens.org.

Learn more about Lurie Children's Bicuspid Aortic Valve Program.