What is a heart murmur?


A heart murmur is an unusual sound a doctor can hear through a stethoscope that indicates turbulent blood flow through the heart. Sometimes it means nothing – it’s just a quirk of that person’s body, which we call an ‘innocent’ murmur. Other times, a heart murmur can indicate a problem with the heart valves.
A normal heartbeat makes the classic ‘lub-dub’ sound when the heart valves close. A murmur sounds different because the valves are not opening or closing properly.
The most common cause of a heart murmur is a narrowed or leaky heart valve. If a doctor hears a suspicious heart murmur then the next step is an echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart). If the heart valves appear abnormal, referral to a cardiologist can be helpful for further assessment and developing a plan for treatment and follow up.
To learn more about issues with heart valves visit: Valvular heart disease | Connected Cardiology
This article is for reference purposes only – it is not designed to be, nor should it be regarded, as professional medical advice. Please consult your own medical practitioner for health advice specific to your condition.