Pulmonary valve disease affects the valve between the heart's lower right chamber and the artery that delivers blood to the lungs. That artery is called the pulmonary artery. The valve is called the pulmonary valve.

A diseased pulmonary valve doesn't work properly. Pulmonary valve disease changes how blood flows from the heart to the lungs.

The pulmonary valve usually acts like a one-way door from the lower right heart chamber to the lungs. Blood flows from the chamber through the pulmonary valve. It then goes to the pulmonary artery and into the lungs. Blood picks up oxygen in the lungs to take to the body.

Types of pulmonary valve disease include:

  • Pulmonary valve stenosis. Narrowing of the pulmonary valve reduces the blood flow from the heart to the pulmonary artery and lungs.
  • Pulmonary valve regurgitation. The flaps of the pulmonary valve don't close tightly. Blood moves backward into the right lower heart chamber, called the right ventricle.
  • Pulmonary atresia. This condition is present at birth. That means it is a congenital heart defect. The pulmonary valve isn't formed. Instead, a solid sheet of tissue blocks blood flow from the right side of the heart. Blood can't go to the lungs to pick up oxygen.

Many types of pulmonary valve disease are due to heart conditions present at birth. Treatment depends on the type and severity of pulmonary valve disease.