What Is the Function of the Trileaflet Aortic Valve?

The trileaflet aortic valve is at the center of the heart between the left ventricle and the aorta, and it serves to prevent blood from moving into the left ventricle from the aorta. It is called trileaflet because it operates by opening and closing three interlocking flaps, according to Healthline.

During systole, the valve opens allowing oxygenated blood to leave the left ventricle and enter the bloodstream, explains the University of Minnesota Department of Surgery. During diastole, the valve closes preventing backflow into the left ventricle.

Aortic stenosis and aortic regurgitation are two of the more common conditions associated with a malfunctioning aortic valve, notes Healthline. Aortic stenosis is a condition in which the valve does not fully open, leading to potential blockage. Aortic regurgitation occurs when the valve does not close properly, and some of the oxygenated blood flows back into the left ventricle.