The burden of valvular heart disease (VHD) is increasing with age, and the elderly patients with moderate or severe VHD are notably common. When to operate in asymptomatic patients with VHD remains controversial. The controversy is whether early surgical intervention should be preferred, or a watchful waiting approach should be followed. The beneficial effects of early surgery should be balanced against operative mortality and long-term results. Indications of early surgery in each of the VHD will be discussed in this review on the basis of the latest American and European guidelines.