The Barnabas Health Valve Center, located at Newark (N.J.) Beth Israel and Saint Barnabas Medical Center, has reached a milestone, having performed 100 transcatheter aortic valve replacement procedures.
According to a Barnabas news release, the center is one of the top 10 in the nation in the number of TAVRs performed for this minimally invasive treatment for aortic stenosis.
Over a 70-year lifetime, the average human heart valve opens and closes more than 2.5 billion times, according to the American Heart Association. That workload can lead to valves stiffening or weakening over the years. Aortic stenosis reduces the valve’s ability to open and close completely and can cause severe shortness of breath, chest pain and weakness.
Without an aortic valve replacement, approximately 50% of people with aortic stenosis will not survive more than an average of two years after the onset of symptoms, according to the release.
The catheter-based TAVR procedure offers a treatment opportunity for many people who are not eligible for open heart surgery because of other medical conditions or advanced age.
The TAVR procedure is performed by a multidisciplinary team of cardiac specialists that includes cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, cardiac anesthesiologists, cardiac imaging specialists, vascular surgeons and a cardiac advanced practice nurse.
The Barnabas Health Valve Center also recently was selected to participate in the PARTNER II Trial that is studying the use of TAVR in a broader range of patients. In addition to being able to extend the opportunity for TAVR to patients who may not be eligible for it at other cardiac centers, the trial provides physicians with more advanced and variable-sized valves that allow them to customize the TAVR procedure to each patient’s anatomy.