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First Heart Sound plus Aortic Ejection Click

Virtual Auscultation

patient torso with stethoscope chestpiece
patient position during auscultation

The patient's position should be sitting.

Lesson

A single first heart sound (S1) followed by an aortic ejection click (AEC) can also mimic a split first heart sound. An AEC follows S1 by 50 milliseconds. An aortic ejection click is caused by thickened aortic valve leaflets. This is commonly seen in a bicuspid aortic valve, a congenital abnormality where someone is born with two aortic valve leaflets instead of the normal three. Listen carefully to the second sound of the pair. If it is an AEC it will have a shorter duration and a higher pitch than the first sound of the pair (S1). The AEC is best heard at the Aortic valve area where splitting of S1 is not heard.

Waveform





Heart Sounds Video

An aortic ejection click is caused by thickened aortic valve leaflets. This is commonly seen in a bicuspid aortic valve, a congenital abnormality where someone is born with two aortic valve leaflets instead of the normal three.


Authors and Reviewers

Authored by Dr. Jonathan Keroes, MD and David Lieberman, Developer, Virtual Cardiac Patient. Medically reviewed by Dr. Barbara Erickson, PhD, RN, CCRN. Last Update: 11/28/2021


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