Non-Invasive Cardiovascular Testing | Invasive Cardiac Procedures
Aortic valvuloplasty, also called balloon valvuloplasty, is a procedure that’s done to widen a heart valve that is too narrow for adequate blood flow. With this procedure a balloon is used to expand the artery.
Aortic valvuloplasty is frequently performed on children, teens, and young adults to repair congenital heart defects. Most older adults with aortic valve stenosis (narrowing) are not good candidates for this procedure due to extreme calcification (hardening) of the artery, inability to tolerate anesthesia or surgery, or other issues. However, it may be used as a temporary measure until a very ill older patient is well enough for open-heart surgery.
If you are a good candidate for this treatment, your heart surgeon will insert a thin, flexible tube called a catheter into an artery in your arm or groin. The catheter is then threaded through the circulatory system into the heart. When it is exactly in position inside the narrowed valve, a tiny balloon on the end of the catheter is gradually inflated to enlarge the opening. Patients will typically be awake during this procedure, and likely spend one night in the hospital to monitor bleeding or any other possible problems from the valvuloplasty. Children who undergo this procedure may need further surgery later in their lives, as it widens the artery, but usually is not able to make it completely normal.
At South Palm Cardiovascular Associates, our top cardiologists have the experience performing aortic valvuloplasty that is needed to make sure the procedure is a success. If your doctor recommends this therapy, he will take the time to answer your questions and discuss any further treatment options with you.
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