TAVR is a minimally invasive procedure to replace the aortic valve in your heart. This is developed as an alternative to surgery for high-risk patients (meaning too sick to undergo surgery), this procedure is now seeing broader use for low-risk patients, too.
Why would I need to undergo TAVR?
Out of 4 valves in the heart, the last of the 4 is the aortic valve. Your heart pumps blood through that valve and out to the rest of your body. TAVR is a procedure that replaces that valve without major surgery.
The most common reason to undergo TAVR is if you have aortic stenosis (narrowing the aortic valve). The narrowing is usually due to calcium buildup on the valve and age-related wear and tear (especially if you’re over age 70). It can also happen because of other health conditions.
TAVR is a less invasive option for treating aortic stenosis. A less invasive procedure allows patients to return to their daily activities and get back on their feet quicker. Especially among the elderly, the ability to resume activity and return to a quality of life is important for overall health and well-being.
Traditionally, open heart surgery is used to completely remove the diseased aortic valve and replace it with a prosthetic valve. Open heart surgery requires an incision across the breast bone, or sternum, and requires the assistance of a heart lung machine to take over the function of the heart during the procedure. The surgery is a several-hour procedure and the recovery process can be lengthy.
However, your cardiologist will explain you about which type of surgery best suits you.
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