The Renown Institute for Heart & Vascular Health is committed to providing the latest advancements in surgical treatment that improve outcomes and lessen recovery time.
 

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)

Renown Institute for Heart and Vascular Health is one of a select group of hospitals across the country to offer a promising new procedure — transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). If a patient is considered too “high-risk” for traditional open-heart surgery, or has previously been considered inoperable, TAVR may be an option.

TAVR is an aortic valve replacement procedure that involves using a catheter to place a new aortic valve in the heart through an incision in the leg. The procedure does not require open-heart surgery, stopping the patient’s heart or hooking the patient up to a heart-lung machine. The average time required to perform TAVR is one to two hours versus four hours for open-heart surgery.

TAVR

Recovery time is also faster. Trials of this less-invasive procedure have shown impressive results. TAVR patients feel better one month after surgery compared to open-heart surgery patients. TAVR patients are hospitalized for three to five days versus open-heart surgery patients who are hospitalized five to 10 days and can face up to four weeks of recovery at home.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a stent and how is one used?
A stent is a metal mesh tube used to prop open an artery during angioplasty. The stent is collapsed to a small diameter and put over a balloon catheter. It's then moved into the area of the blockage. When the balloon is inflated, the stent expands and locks in place to hold the artery open. The stent holds the artery open permanently to improve blood flow to the heart and relieve chest pain. A few weeks after the stent is placed, the inside lining of the artery (the endothelium) grows over the metal surface of the stent.

When are stents used?
Stents are used depending on the size of the artery and location of the blockage. Stenting is a fairly common procedure; in fact, over 70 percent of coronary angioplasty procedures also include stenting.

What are the advantages of using a stent?
In certain patients, stents reduce the re-narrowing that can occur after balloon angioplasty or other procedures that use catheters. Stents also help restore normal blood flow and keep an artery open.

Coated stents are stents that slowly release a drug that reduces the rate of re-blockage that occurs with existing stents and angioplasty procedures.