Functional and pathomorphological anatomy of the aortic valve and root for aortic valve sparing surgery in tricuspid and bicuspid aortic valves
The aortic valve (AV) is a three-dimensional structure, with leaflets that are suspended within the functional aortic annulus (FAA). These structures (AV and FAA) are therefore intrinsically connected and disease of just one component can independently lead to AV dysfunction. Hence, AV dysfunction can occur in the setting of entirely normal valve leaflets. However, as these structures are functionally inter-connected, disease of one component can lead to abnormalities of the other over time. Thus, AV dysfunction is often multifactorial. Valve-sparing root procedures require an in-depth understanding of these inter-relationships, and herein we are providing a detailed account of some of the most pertinent anatomical relationships.