Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement Surgery (TAVI)

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement Surgery (TAVI)

Wednesday 9th October 2019

Professor Jan Kovac, an interventional cardiologist at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, presented a live Transcatheter aortic valve implantation procedure (TAVI) on the 9th of October. As part of the International Structural Heart Disease conference.

In previous years, an audience of 150,000 people have tuned in to watch these live procedures. The Third China Structural Heart Disease Conference 2019 brings together clinicians from across the world through an online platform that demonstrates new techniques and innovations for educational and knowledge sharing purposes. The conference broadcasts 65 operations from 34 heart centres across the world to countries in Asia, Europe and North America. A multitude of expert clinicians perform procedures on variety of different heart problems on a patient in their clinics which is broadcasted out.

TAVI is an alternative option for patients who may be at high risk for open heart surgery and is a less invasive procedure than open heart-valve surgery. The damaged heart valve would be replaced using a heart valve made of natural tissue obtained from the heart of a pig or cow. The new valve is delivered via catheter, thereby avoiding open heart-valve surgery. The replacement valve collapses to a very small diameter and is crimped onto the balloon device, then special imaging equipment is used to guide and position the new valve.

The surgeon positions the replacement valve inside the patient's natural aortic valve and inflates a balloon. This causes the replacement valve to expand, pushing the faulty valve aside. The replacement valve begins to function as soon as the balloon catheter deflates to permit the flow of blood. The catheterization procedure typically takes 1 to 2 hours, and patients are up and walking within 24-48 hours after the procedure. The typical hospital stay is 3 to 5 days.

At the end of the live procedure, Professor Kovac and his team (all wearing Heart Valve Voice scrub hats!) talked to the delegates about the importance of choice in treatment options and accessibility of new innovations to all patients across the UK. Professor Kovac then described some of the activities we’ve delivered over the years and how important patient advocacy is in ensure new innovative treatments have accelerated uptake.

The week long event will also include presentations on patient screening, preoperative assessment, operation strategy, imaging evaluation and the latest technical concepts and progress of in mitral, tricuspid, pulmonary valve intervention, left atrial appendage, and paravalvular intervention.

Jan Kovak said “it was a brilliant opportunity to participate in the China International Structural Heart Disease Conference and showcase our hospital and our innovative treatments for heart valve disease. It was also lovely to promote our relationship with Heart Valve Voice and to explain how we engage with our patients so they feel empowered in the their treatment decisions”

Read more on the different treatment options for heart valve disease treatment.