Percutaneous aortic valve replacement (TAVI)

Using the TAVI technique (Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation) cardiologists and cardiac surgeons can replace the aortic valve via the artery in your groin. This treatment can only be used for certain forms of aortic valve disease.

Before your treatment

  • The treatment and the possible associated risks will be discussed with you and your family beforehand.
  • A number of preparatory tests which are carried out in hospital will be arranged to find out whether the procedure is feasible and decide what size of heart valve to use. A group of specialists called the heart team will decide whether or not you are eligible after carefully discussing the results. The following tests will be arranged:
  • Certain medications have to be stopped temporarily. This will be discussed in detail beforehand with the doctor providing your treatment.
  • You must not eat or drink anything before you are admitted to hospital.

The treatment

1.    You will be given a general anaesthetic.

2.    Using a special catheter a biological heart valve will be inserted via the artery in your groin as far as the diseased aortic valve.

3.    At that place a balloon will then be used to put the new heart valve in place, and the diseased aortic valve will be pushed outwards to make space for it.

4.    You will be admitted to hospital for 5 to 7 days.

After the treatment

  • For three days after the treatment you must not have a bath, lift heavy items or ride a bicycle. You can have a shower. This is to allow the puncture site in your groin to heal properly.
  • For three months after the treatment you must take extra platelet inhibitors.

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