Aortic stenosis is a narrowing of the aortic valve that affects how blood flows through the heart and body. While not often linked to heart valve narrowing, high and irregular blood pressure can affect the aortic valve.

The opening in the aortic valve in the heart is narrowed in those with aortic stenosis.

This narrowing can affect the flow of blood through the heart and the body, potentially leading to heart failure, strokes, and other serious medical conditions.

While people with heart failure and valve disease can have low blood pressure, aortic stenosis typically has an association with high blood pressure in the left ventricle.

Prolonged exposure to irregular blood pressure (low or high) can worsen the condition.

This article provides information on how blood pressure affects your heart and how both hypotension and hypertension can be harmful to your overall health. It also covers what you can do to address blood pressure issues if you have existing heart disease, or you have certain risk factors for the condition.

The aortic valve is located between the lower left chamber of the heart (also known as the left ventricle) and the main artery of the body, the aorta.

When the aortic valve is working as it should, it opens when the heart contracts. When this opening is narrowed though, it can prevent the blood from flowing from the left ventricle through the aorta.

This means the heart may not work as efficiently. As a result, it has to work harder to push blood through the body raising your blood pressure.

Aortic stenosis can also cause high blood pressure inside the heart’s left ventricle. This can cause the muscle in the left ventricle to thicken and enlarge leading to further complications and difficulty pushing blood out of the heart.

When your blood pressure drops, your heart may begin to beat quicker and blood vessels in other parts of the body may narrow to try to maintain typical blood pressure levels.

If these adjustments aren’t enough to compensate for lower blood pressure, organs including your heart may not get enough oxygen. This can lead to symptoms of shock and place you at higher risk of heart attack or stroke.

Irregular blood pressure isn’t a primary cause of aortic stenosis.

While high blood pressure can be a risk factor for aortic stenosis and how quickly it progresses, low blood pressure can develop after your heart gets quite sick and needs hospital treatment.

This 2016 research notes that persistent low blood pressure can be harmful in those with mild or moderate aortic stenosis, and it can increase the chance of heart failure and death.

The irregularities or scarring behind aortic stenosis can be caused by:

Factors that can place you at a greater risk for aortic stenosis include:

In very mild cases of aortic stenosis without symptoms, your doctor may recommend a watch and see approach to determine whether the condition progresses.

Your healthcare team may also suggest lifestyle choices that support heart health like exercise and not smoking.

This is where monitoring and treating blood pressure issues may become more important.

Your doctor may suggest medications to help to help with irregular blood pressure, prevent aortic stenosis, or stop it from progressing.

Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, and diuretics are examples of some of the types of drugs your doctor may consider prescribing.

In the hospital, they may give you vasopressors that help blood vessels constrict if you have low blood pressure with aortic stenosis.

But importantly, any medications they prescribe won’t cure the injured aortic valve.

In more severe symptomatic cases of aortic stenosis, aortic valve replacement or other procedures like transcatheter aortic valve implantation and balloon valvuloplasty may be necessary.

Aortic stenosis can affect blood flow throughout the heart and body.

Aging and congenital valve diseases are some of the most common causes of this condition, but prolonged irregular blood pressure can also increase the risk of further damage to the heart valves.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of aortic stenosis, it’s important to let your doctor know.

Treatment may require valve replacement surgery. Left untreated, aortic stenosis can increase your chances of a heart attack or stroke.