Aortic valve surgery

Our cardiothoracic surgeons at Spectrum Health offer a wide range of surgical treatments for patients requiring aortic heart valve repair or replacement. Replacing or repairing your valve can either be done through a minimally invasive approach or traditional open heart surgery. Spectrum Health has a robust minimally invasive cardiac surgery program. 

Minimally invasive surgeries include:

Through a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation, our multidisciplinary team of cardiothoracic surgeons, interventional cardiologists, physician assistants, nurse coordinators, advanced imagers, and radiology technicians will review old and new studies on every patient and choose best treatment plans. Shared decision making is a process in which clinicians and patients work together to make decisions and select treatment and care plans based on clinical evidence.

In 2021, Spectrum Health performed 177 surgical aortic valve replacements (alone or with CABG).
3 gold stars

Our cardiothoracic surgeons received an STS 3-STAR rating, the highest possible rating, from The Society of Thoracic Surgeons for the quality of aortic valve replacement surgery when performed with a coronary artery bypass graft (CABG). 

National data coverage period: January 2019-December 2021

Treatment options

Traditional and minimally invasive aortic valve open heart surgery
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Spectrum Health cardiac surgeons perform open aortic valve surgery as well as minimally invasive aortic valve open heart surgery. A minimally invasive sternal approach allows for a smaller sternal incision.

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)
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Surgeons performing TAVR

A TAVR procedure utilizes a collapsible valve implanted percutaneously, and is indicated for patients at low, intermediate, high, or extreme risk for open-heart surgery

Balloon aortic valvuloplasty
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This is a treatment option offered by Spectrum Health’s Structural Heart team for patients with severe aortic valve disease who are deemed inoperable for traditional open-heart surgery and are not candidates for TAVR, due to their current comorbidities. Balloon aortic valvuloplasty is a palliative therapy or bridge to either surgical or transcatheter aortic valve replacement. 

With this procedure, a balloon dilation catheter is inserted through an artery in the groin and advanced into the heart. When the catheter reaches the valve, a balloon at the end of the tube is inflated. The balloon widens the valve opening. The goal of the procedure is to reduce the severity of stenosis.

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