Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) is a minimally invasive surgical procedure to replace the narrowed aortic valve, without removing the old one. Instead it wedges a replacement valve into the aortic valve's place.
It is sometimes called Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI).
Who is a good candidate for this type of valve surgery?
Usually valve replacement surgery required an open heart procedure with “sternotomy”. But TAVR or TAVI can be done through very small openings and leaving all the chest bones in place.
A TAVR procedure is not without risks, but it provides beneficial treatment options for those who are considered at intermediate or high risk of complications from open heart procedure. Most people who have this procedure are in their 70s or 80s.
TAVR is a procedure to replace the narrowed aortic valve otherwise called as aortic valve stenosis. This narrowing prevents the valve from opening fully obstructing the blood flow from the heart to aorta and them to rest of your body.
This could result in chest pain, fainting, leg swelling, fatigue and shortness of breath. Majorly, it can also lead to heart failure and sudden cardiac death.
Your treatment team will let you know how to prepare for the procedure and what to expect during the procedure. Here are few things that you might be asked to do:
The entire procedure typically takes approximately 1–2 hours. Your heart team will determine whether you should have a mild sedative or general anaesthesia.
At the start of the procedure, your doctor will make a small cut in one of three places:
The neck or
Space between your ribs
The doctor will guide a thin, flexible tube with the heart valve through the incision, into your artery, and to your diseased valve. The Medtronic TAVR heart valve will be placed in your diseased valve or failing surgical valve and begin working immediately. Your doctor will then remove the tube and close the incision.
Patient will be kept in ICU for a day after the procedure. Generally you will be spending two to five days in hospital.
Meanwhile you will be asked to take blood thinning medications to prevent blood clots after the procedure. Your doctor will recommend that you take medications before certain dental procedures to prevent certain infections, as you're at higher risk of certain infections with a replacement heart valve. Talk to your doctor about his or her recommendations.
Can a valve be repaired in other ways?
Valves can be placed by surgical aortic valve replacement, or SAVR.
What are the advantages of TAVR over surgical aortic valve replacement?
TAVR has many advantages over SAVR, especially in older or other high-risk patients. TAVR is much less invasive.
How long does it take to recover from a TAVR operation?
The recovery time is much faster for TAVR patients who are typically out of hospital within three to five days.
Is TAVR painful?
No. TAVR is a minimally invasive procedure to replace the aortic valve in people with aortic valve stenosis
Is it safe to have an MRI with a TAVR heart valve?
If you need an MRI with a TAVR heart valve, be sure to inform your doctor. Not doing so could result in injury or death.
Do you feel better after heart valve replacement?
After you have recovered from your heart valve replacement surgery, you will probably feel better than you did before you had the surgery. It may take several weeks for your recovery, including healing your incisions. Then you should be able to resume most of your normal activities.
Is TAVR surgery safe?
Clinical trials have shown that TAVR is safe and effective, with our experienced doctors performing the treatment.