September 13, 2021

This week is Heart Valve Disease Week, here in Canada and around the globe. It’s a time when we pay particular attention to helping people understand the symptoms and signs of heart valve disease. It’s also an opportunity to share stories of members of this community who have received care and who have become passionate about helping other Canadians realize what to watch for and when to seek care.

The good news is heart valve disease, while common and serious, is treatable. With so many of us living longer and looking forward to a good quality of life, early detection and timely treatment are key.

Through our efforts and with your support, we hope to bring increased awareness to the signs and symptoms of heart valve disease. We want Canadians 65+, who are most at risk, to know that when everyday activities become increasingly difficult, or when what was an easy task like walking the dog, gardening or light housework brings about new breathlessness or dizziness, it may be the sign of heart valve disease and it’s important to seek medical attention and a proper diagnosis.

Our Heart Valve Disease Week video is being shared here and with Canadians coast to coast this week. It helps pinpoint just how important it is to notice subtle physical changes, like those in the video and what’s mentioned here.

We hope you come across this video when you are surfing the internet this week and know that we are an important community, with important stories and information to share.

We equally hope you might use this week’s campaign as an opportunity to talk to your friends and loved ones about the importance of watching for symptoms of heart valve disease, inviting them to learn more while also encouraging them to put a stethoscope check with their healthcare provider as a priority on their agenda.

Symptoms of heart valve disease can include chest tightness/pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, irregular heartbeats, fainting and reduced physical activity. However, some heart valve disease patients do not show symptoms or have no symptoms for many years, even if their disease is severe - which is why having a regular stethoscope check to detect a heart murmur is so important.

Dave Smith, whose video you can find on our website and in this edition of our newsletter, noticed breathlessness when chasing his granddaughter. He’s enjoying a wonderful quality of life post treatment and knows we have work to do to get the word out. That’s where you can help!

It’s easy to share our Heart Valve Disease video with your friends and loved ones either through email or, if you are on social media, there too. Here’s how:

You can cut and paste the post below which will link to the video:

It’s heart valve disease week around the globe. A cause that is near to my heart. People 65+ are most at risk. They may have symptoms of heart valve disease and don’t realize it. Watch this video to learn more. Also remember it’s important to ask your doctor for a stethoscope. If you or a loved one have symptoms, have your doctor #Listen to Your Heart. #ListenToYourHeart #ValveWeek21

Thanks for being a part of this community and helping us spread the word.

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