Your hearts aortic valve should open and close freely, allowing blood to flow to your heart. When your heart valve is too narrow or grows stiff due to calcium buildup (typically seen in older adults) – blood flow is restricted and you may have a disease called aortic stenosis.
An estimated 1.5 million people in the U.S. are currently diagnosed with this debilitating condition. Most patients can be treated with a surgical aortic valve replacement, but there are some people for whom open-heart surgery is too risky. In those cases, a transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) can be a good option.
TAVR is a minimally invasive procedure used to replace the aortic valve and treat aortic stenosis. It results in a smaller incision than traditional open heart surgery, and it takes less time, which may result in a shorter recovery time.
If you have aortic stenosis and it's not treated, your heart valve will weaken. You’ll experience fatigue, dizziness, chest pain or pressure, a heart murmur, shortness of breath during activity, heart palpitations and fainting. Left untreated, 50% of patients with this serious condition are not expected to live more than 2 years.
Aurora performed the first transcatheter aortic valve replacement in Wisconsin and today performs more replacements than any other health system in the state.
The TAVR Program at Aurora St. Luke’s is one of the top 5 sites in the U.S. based on volume, outcomes, clinical trials and training. We are the largest and most experienced site in Wisconsin, providing a less-invasive solution for patients with complex, high-risk heart problems who are not candidates for open-heart surgery.