A bicuspid aortic valve is an aortic valve that only has two leaflets, instead of three. The aortic valve allows oxygen-rich blood to flow from the heart to the aorta. It prevents the blood from flowing back from the aorta into the heart. An abnormal aortic valve develops during the early weeks of pregnancy, when the baby's heart develops.
Review Date 5/8/2022
Updated by: Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.