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What is a Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)?

a new and innovative approach to the treatment of severe aortic stenosis

Among the most recent innovations at the Heart & Vascular Center is the Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR ) Procedure, a new approach to heart valve replacement without major surgery. Utilizing the advanced imaging technology of our Hybrid OR, cardiologists make a small puncture in the groin and thread a catheter up to the heart. Specialized tools remove the faulty heart valve, and the new valve is immediately put in its place.

For patients who are too high-risk for open-heart surgery, the TAVR Procedure is a real game changer. The Maimonides TAVR program has helped so many people regain a quality of life they thought was gone for good.

What is a TAVR?

A TAVR is a new and innovative approach to the treatment of severe aortic stenosis (narrowing of the aortic valve opening). Instead of standard open heart surgery, a balloon catheter is placed in the femoral artery (in the groin) and guided into the heart. A compressed heart valve is then placed in the catheter and positioned directed inside the diseased aortic valve. Once in position, the balloon is inflated to secure the valve in place.

When is TAVR an appropriate treatment?

 

Also known as transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI), this procedure is for patients suffering from aortic stenosis who are considered at high risk for surgery due to advanced age or other serious illness.

 

The transfemoral (above the knee) approach is now approved by the FDA for patients who have severe, symptomatic aortic stenosis and who are ineligible for open heart surgery. It is not approved for patients who are eligible for traditional aortic valve surgery, patients with bicuspid aortic valves or endocarditis, or patients who cannot tolerate anticoagulation/antiplatelet medication therapy.

In clinical trials, TAVR has been shown to significantly improve survival compared to non-surgical therapy.  It also significantly improves symptoms, quality-of-life and reduces repeat hospitalizations compared to medical therapy.

Contact Us

If you have questions about TAVR implantation and how it can help you, please call us at (718) 283-7364.