A Minimally Invasive Surgical Option

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement

Patients who are suffering with severe aortic stenosis, which is the narrowing of the heart’s aortic valve opening that restricts blood flow, have a minimally invasive surgical option available at the Heart and Vascular Center at Manatee Memorial Hospital. Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) is an advanced heart valve replacement procedure that offers new hope to patients who have aortic valve stenosis and are at high or extreme risk for open-heart surgery.


TAVR patient Eugene Vaadi describes his experience:


What is Aortic Stenosis?

Aortic stenosis is a common heart condition that is caused by the narrowing of the heart’s aortic valve due to a buildup of calcium deposits. When the valve narrows, it does not open or close properly, which makes the heart work harder to pump blood through the body. Over time, this can cause the heart to weaken and function poorly, which can lead to heart failure and an increased risk for sudden cardiac death.

Symptoms of aortic stenosis may include:

  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Fainting
  • Heart murmur
  • Heart palpitations
  • Rheumatic fever
  • Shortness of breath during activity

Treatment of Aortic Stenosis

Treatment for individuals with severe aortic valve stenosis is typically managed by a team of experienced cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons who collaborate to determine the most appropriate care for each patient. Medications do not cure aortic stenosis but are sometimes prescribed to help control symptoms, maximize heart function, control blood pressure and control heart rhythm disturbance.

Aortic valve replacement (AVR) is the standard treatment for patients with aortic stenosis. Because AVR is an invasive surgical procedure and many patients are at high risk for surgery, or are altogether ineligible for surgery, TAVR provides a new option for many patients.

How Does TAVR Work?

During the minimally invasive TAVR surgery, the surgeon will replace the heart valve with a CoreValve® Evolut™ R System or a SAPIEN 3 Transcatheter device without open-heart surgery and without removing the diseased valve.

The Evolut R System from Medtronic is approved for patients with severe aortic stenosis who are at high or extreme risk for surgery. It is the first and only recapturable and repositionable device available in the U.S. The CoreValve heart valve is made from pig heart tissue. It is designed to work like your own heart valve.

The SAPIEN 3 Transcatheter heart valve is a balloon-expandable heart valve that will replace your diseased aortic valve. It is made of a metal frame, three tissue leaflets (made from cow heart tissue) with a fabric skirt. This valve can be implanted in both intermediate and high-risk patients.

These devices are usually inserted through an artery in the leg and then guided through the arteries into the heart. TAVR can also be performed through an artery in the arm or directly through the aorta. The device then expands and takes over the original valve’s function to allow oxygen-rich blood to flow efficiently out of the heart.

Structural Heart Clinic

The Structural Heart Clinic at Manatee Memorial Hospital is dedicated to patients with aortic stenosis and stroke and bleeding risks associated with atrial fibrillation. The clinic is part of our Heart and Vascular Center and is located across the street from the hospital at 300 Riverside Drive East, Suite 1350. Patients will receive personalized evaluation from a team healthcare professionals.

Please call our office at 941-708-8064 for more information or to make an appointment.

Amanda Harrington
Please contact our Structural Heart Navigator, Amanda Harrington, RN, BSN, at 941-708-8064 to see if you’re a candidate for TAVR.