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Walk a mile for heart valve disease

Heart Valve Voice is the UK’s dedicated heart valve disease charity.

As a patient group, the lived experience of our patients is at the centre of all that we do. With our team of patient advocates, we are committed to raising awareness and improving the diagnosis, detection and treatment of valve disease, to ensure that every future patient receives the best treatment and returns to a good quality as quickly as possible.

Heart valve disease is a condition affecting over one million people over the age of 65 in the UK. It is caused by wear, disease or damage to one or more of the heart’s valves, affecting the flow of blood. Despite its prevalence, Symptoms, including shortness of breath, tiredness, chest pain and dizziness, often go unnoticed or are mistakenly put down to the ageing process.

Symptom recognition is therefore key. We have found that many patients modify behaviour and adjust their life instead of recognising that something is wrong. This is why our Mile Walk campaign is so important. By walking one mile every month we want to draw attention to subtle changes in health. With each mile we walk together we can raise awareness of the symptoms of valve disease and help improve detection and diagnosis of the disease.

So, on the 20th of every month, get your family, friends and a pair of walking boots and start your Mile Walk for heart valve disease. Make sure you tag a picture of yourself on your walk with the hashtag #MileWalk – and remember to like, share and comment on any other #MileWalk posts you see.

Although a serious condition, the good news is that heart valve disease is treatable if diagnosed early. There are a variety of effective treatments available for heart valve disease patients, including valve repair or replacement. Quality of treatment and care is a key component in our policy drives. In 2019, Heart Valve Voice launched our Gold Standard of Care, where we mapped out a ‘gold standard’ for the diagnosis, treatment and management of heart valve disease. We want to ensure future all patients return to a good quality of life with their friends and family as quickly as possible.

Heart Valve Voice have a busy schedule of campaigns to help us raise awareness of valve disease and effect change in policy. You can read our Heart Valve Voice Magazine and find out more about our work and get involved in our upcoming campaigns.

As well as details on upcoming events our magazine shares stories and updates from our patients on their valve disease experiences. Like Ian Berry, who six months post-op is back on his bike and doing what he loves again.

Our patients’ lived experience plays a central role in our awareness and policy drives, if you or anyone you know would like to share a story visit our website and get involved.

To find out more and get involved follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn

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