Life Insurance with Aortic Valve Disorders

by Jeff Rose on September 11, 2013 · 2 comments

Life Insurance with Aortic Valve Disorders If you have an aortic valve disorder like aortic stenosis (AS) or aortic insufficiency (AI), the condition is going to be an issue when you apply for life insurance. Insurance companies are very cautious about aortic valve disorders because of their potential to cause serious heart problems.

However, you still could get insured despite your condition. It really depends on a few factors including the seriousness of your condition. To get a better idea of what to expect, give our guide to insurance underwriting for aortic valve disorders a read.

Life Insurance Underwriting for Aortic Valve Disorders

When you apply for life insurance with an aortic valve disorder, you’ll need to answer some extra questions about your condition. You’ll need to answer:

  • How long have you had an aortic valve disorder?
  • What type of disorder do you have (aortic stenosis, aortic sclerosis, or aortic insufficiency)?
  • Has your disorder led to any negative symptoms like chest pains, dizziness, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, or heart failure?
  • Have you had an echocardiogram or cardiac catheterization to check the seriousness of your condition?
  • Do you have any other risk factors for heart disease like high blood pressure, smoking or a family history of heart disease?
  • What medications are you taking?

While there are no medications for an aortic valve disorder, your doctor could prescribe medications for your heart like: Thrombolytics, Beta blockers, Nitrates, and cholesterol medication like statins. All these medications could be insurable depending on the severity of your condition.

Be sure to answer every question on your application in complete detail. Underwriters will want to know everything they can about your aortic valve disorder to make sure there isn’t a serious problem. If your application appears incomplete, they may deny your application or give you a poor rating as a precaution.

Get Quotes for Life Insurance with Aortic Valve Disorders

When you apply for life insurance with aortic valve disorder, the biggest factor for your rating will be the severity of your condition. If you have aortic stenosis, the insurance company will want to know by how much your aortic valve has narrowed as the narrower the valve, the higher the chance of heart problems. If you have insufficiency, the insurance company will want to know how much blood backflow there is in your valve.

Beyond the severity of your condition, insurance companies will also consider your age. These conditions are rated less poorly as you get older. Finally, they will consider your overall health. While each company has slightly different standards, here are some general underwriting guidelines to give you an idea what rating you’ll receive.

  • Preferred Plus: Impossible for someone with an aortic valve disorder. Even if your disorder isn’t causing any problems now, insurance companies will be too worried about future problems to give you this rating.
  • Preferred: Also impossible for someone with an aortic valve disorder. Insurance companies consider this condition too serious to give a discounted price on a policy.
  • Standard: Best possible rating for someone with an aortic valve disorder. Usually only given to applicants that are 60 or older because the real issue with valve disorders is they cause early heart problems. To get this rating with AS, your AS should be minimal meaning the peak gradient is ≤15mmHg. If you have AI, the blood backflow should only be mild. In addition, you must be in overall decent health and not have other heart problems.
  • Table Rating (substandard): Most likely rating for someone with an aortic valve disorder. Your rating will depend on how severe your condition is, your age, whether you have any other heart problems, and your overall health.
  • Declines: Applicants with severe AS (valve opening)

Aortic Valve Disorder Insurance Case Studies

While an aortic valve disorder will make it harder to qualify for a policy, you can improve your chances with a good application. Here are a couple real life examples when we were able to help applicants get a better rating:

Case Study: Male, 61 y/o, diagnosed with minimal aortic stenosis at 56, never caused any problems, overall in decent health

This applicant was in good health so it was a bit of a surprise when he was diagnosed with minimal aortic stenosis at 61. He maintained his good health habits and the condition never developed into anything serious. However, when he applied for life insurance, he only received poorly rated policies. We thought this was because it had been so long since he had any testing for his condition. While the applicant seemed fine, this isn’t enough for life insurance companies. We recommended he go for an echocardiogram to recheck his valve condition. The tests showed the AS was still minimal. This new information helped the applicant receive a Standard rating.

Case Study #2: Female, 59 y/o, diagnosed with mild AS at 56, used to be overweight and former smoker, taking statins for cholesterol

This applicant used to have an unhealthy lifestyle. She smoked, was overweight and had high cholesterol. When she was diagnose with mild AS at 56, her doctor warned her that she needed to take better care of herself to avoid future heart trouble. She took this advice to heart and quit smoking, started taking statins regularly, and lost a lot of weight. All in all she was much healthier and this helped her AS from getting worse. However, when she applied for life insurance, she couldn’t get a policy. We thought that life insurance companies were too worried about her past history. We recommended that she contact her doctor and get a note backing up her much improved lifestyle. With this information, she was able to get a rated policy.

An aortic valve disorder makes getting life insurance difficult, but not always impossible. To get through this tricky situation, it helps to work with a professional. Our company specializes in finding insurance for applicants with an aortic valve disorder.

We can help you put together your application and match you up with the best companies for your situation. For more information and free rate quotes, call or complete our brief Compare Quotes form today.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Cynthia Cloutier August 14, 2015 at 9:11 pm

My Husband who is 68 has aortic valve insufficiency. The Drs. suggest doing nothing except monitoring. He also has an abdominal aneurism too small to operate on we found out last winter. Again, monitor. He has slight COPD. He stopped smoking almost 5 yrs. ago. He feels healthy now and has no restrictions. The only med he takes is Simvastatin 20mg Is there a co. that will insure him? We do not want Guaranteed Issue Life. Thank you so much!


Jeff Rose November 10, 2015 at 3:54 pm

@ Cynthia As I’m sure you’re aware, every situation is unique obtaining affordable life insurance. Especially with a heart condition. Please contact our toll-free # and we’ll do our best.


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