News Center

Friday, May 1, 2009

St. Francis cardiac expert explains heart valve disease, murmurs

INDIANAPOLIS – When most people think about murmurs and heart disease, they don’t think about their heart valves, which regulate the flow of blood and oxygen through the four chambers of the heart.

At an upcoming “Ask the Doc” program sponsored by the St. Francis Heart Center at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, May 14, cardiothoracic surgeon Marc Gerdisch, M.D., will explain the importance of understanding why heart valves may cause murmurs and when it’s time to seek treatment.

Gerdisch will answer questions about advanced and innovative techniques that set new standards for murmurs and heart valve treatment at St. Francis. Attendees also will be eligible for a free valvular echo screening.

Heart murmurs are caused by valves inside the heart that don’t close properly. Sometimes, people can live with heart murmurs a long time without any symptoms. However, if the problem becomes more serious, the blood flow to the heart may be affected.

More than 5 million Americans suffer from some form of heart valve disease, according to the American Heart Association.

The “Ask the Doc” program will be at the Heart Center’s Community Center at 8111 S. Emerson Ave.

To register for this free program, go to, or call 317-782-4422