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Q. What does ballerina foot mean?

Answered by
Dr. Vivek Pillai
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Nov 16, 2016 and last reviewed on: Nov 02, 2020

Hi doctor,

I have been told that I have ballerina foot. Is this dangerous? Does it mean I have a heart disease? Or is it a common finding?

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#

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • It means that you have a condition known as mitral valve prolapse.

For further information consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Thank you doctor,

Does it always leak or can it remain the same also? Is there any way that this could have been misdiagnosed? The reason for this is that the cardiologist who did the echo has also misdiagnosed me with familial hypocholesterolemia and then said I did not actually have it. Could it be something else? Or just the regurgitation without prolapse?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • Many times mitral valve prolapse only have trivial leaks, which do not progress and many times echocardiographers overdiagnose mitral valve prolapse. So, the interpretation of mitral valve prolapse varies from one echocardiographer to the other.

The Probable causes:

Possibly congenital.

Investigations to be done:

Re-echo assessment.

Probable diagnosis:

Mitral valve prolapse.

Treatment plan:

Periodic monitoring, annual assessment of mitral regurgitation.

Regarding follow up:

For further information consult a cardiologist online.---> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Hi doctor,

Does the ballerina aspect of it make the condition worse to a poorer outcome? Or is it not that significant? I also have constant back pain between shoulder blades. Is this related? I am really scared that something bad is going to happen as I have a small child. Could I develop cardiomyopathy and if I already had that, would it been picked up?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • Ballerina foot is just another name for mitral valve prolapse. It has no connection with the progression of this condition.
  • Also, your back pain is not related, although patients with mitral valve prolapse could present with a vague chest pain.
  • Cardiomyopathy will not occur unless you have additional persistent fast heart rate or decreased blood supply to the heart.

For further information consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Hi doctor,

I read an article, which mentioned wall abnormalities make the condition worse. Also, the article makes out that the appearance of ballerina foot makes it worse. I have attached the article. Does everyone who has MVP show the ballerina foot pattern?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

I understand your concerns.

I just went through the article about wall motion abnormalities and MVP (attachment removed to protect patient identity). It is stated that the ballerina foot abnormality does not usually cause problems; however, there could be a wall motion abnormality. The risk of developing cardiomyopathy is less.


Treatment plan:

Based on your physicians judgement, you could start a small dose of either beta blockers or ACE inhibitors. ACE inhibitors may prevent adverse LV remodeling (left ventricle) and development of cardiomyopathy.

Regarding follow up:

For further doubts consult a cardiologist online.---> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Hi doctor,

I do not understand the issue. You said that there could be a wall motion abnormality. Is that ballerina foot or do you mean something? Do you think this type is definitely degenerative? Is this a more severe type? What do you mean by the risk of developing cardiomyopathy is less?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • The ballerina foot abnormality is a wall motion abnormality.
  • When compared to other wall motion abnormalities seen in mitral valve prolapse the risk of adverse events in this particular abnormality is less.

For further information consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Hi doctor,

Does the wall abnormality mean the damaged left ventricle? Is this a worse case of MVP? Or could it be one of the benign cases that do not progress?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • In your case, the wall motion abnormality is related to the MVP and not due to other causes.
  • Like I said before, ballerina foot has less likelihood of progression of cardiomyopathy. Your left ventricle is not damaged here.

For further doubts consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist

Thank you doctor,

Is my MVP a worst case or a benign?

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • Cardiomyopathy of MVP suggests that ballerina foot has some association with it, so putting it plainly, I would say you run some risk of developing this so called cardiomyopathy.
  • I use the word so called as researchers are reluctant to label it so. It is not exactly benign.

For further doubts consult a cardiologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/cardiologist


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