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Henry Ford Hospital hits new heart valve surgery milestone
Date:4/14/2014

DETROIT Doctors at Henry Ford Hospital reached a medical milestone April 3, performing the 25th successful transcatheter valve replacement using a novel way to access the heart.

Henry Ford is the only hospital in the United States performing the unique procedure called transcaval valve replacement, which accesses the heart by temporarily connecting major blood vessels.

Northern Michigan resident Viola Waller, 80, underwent Henry Ford's first transcaval procedure on July 3, 2013 when traditional valve replacement was not medically viable.

"Nobody could help me here," the mother of three, grandmother of five and great-grandmother of three said Thursday from her home in Charlevoix. "I'm doing great I really am. If I hadn't had it done, I wouldn't have had a future. I'm very happy I had it done. And I think I got the best care possible."

William O'Neill, M.D., medical director of Henry Ford's Center for Structural Heart Disease, says the milestone brings a message of hope for other potential patients in Michigan and across the country.

"The success of this approach offers a new route for heart valve patients who may be out of options," Dr. O'Neill says, estimating this procedure could help 25,000 to 50,000 patients annually.

During transcaval valve replacement, a wire is guided into a leg and up through the femoral vein. By gradual dilation, an opening between the vein and artery is then widened to the point of allowing a catheter to connect them, continue to the heart, and implant the new artificial aortic heart valve.

As the catheter is removed, plugs are inserted in the artery and the vein to close the holes made for the temporary connection of the two major blood vessels.

Robert Lederman, M.D., an interventional cardiologist at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, developed the transcaval technique in a research setting. He came to Henry Ford in July 2013 to observe the initial proce
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Contact: Tammy Battaglia
Tammy.Battaglia@hfhs.org
248-881-0809
Henry Ford Health System
Source:Eurekalert  

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