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Haemolytic anaemia after mitral valve repair due to recurrent mild to moderate mitral regurgitation
  1. Anna Björkenheim1,
  2. Soon-Ok Cha2 and
  3. Irina Dioubanova3
  1. 1 Department of Cardiology, School of Medical Sciences Campus USÖ, Örebro, Sweden
  2. 2 Department of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery, School of Medical Sciences Campus USÖ, Örebro, Sweden
  3. 3 Department of Clinical Physiology, School of Medical Sciences Campus USÖ, Örebro, Sweden
  1. Correspondence to Dr Anna Björkenheim, anna.bjorkenheim{at}


A 52-year-old man underwent mitral valve repair for mitral regurgitation. Four months postoperatively, the patient developed dyspnoea, fatigue and dark urine. He presented to his primary care physician 6 months postoperatively, where an evaluation revealed anaemia and mild renal failure. The haemoglobinuria was misdiagnosed as gross haematuria and the patient consequently underwent several unnecessary invasive urological exams. A transthoracic echocardiogram showed a recurrent mitral regurgitation that was considered non-significant, before performing additional laboratory testing and a renewed echocardiogram. The above results showed evidence of haemolysis and a mild to moderate mitral regurgitation, although with a high velocity jet. The patient was diagnosed with haemolytic anaemia that necessitated blood transfusions and a reoperation with a mechanical valve, after which the patient made a full recovery. Importantly, it was mainly the velocity of the jet and not the severity of the mitral regurgitation that caused the mechanical trauma to red blood cells.

  • valvar diseases
  • cardiothoracic surgery
  • hematuria
  • haematology (incl blood transfusion)
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  • Contributors The patient is currently under the care of AB. S-OC performed both the mitral valve repair and the mitral valve replacement. ID performed one of the echocardiograms. AB came up with the idea of the case report. All authors discussed the results and contributed substantially to the manuscript and approved the final version. All authors are in agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

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