HealthWatch: Suture free valve replacement

Green Bay (WFRV) When the heart’s aortic valve is obstructed, your heart needs to work harder to pump blood to your body.
If you have severe aortic valve stenosis, you’ll usually need surgery to replace the valve. Left untreated, the death rate is about 50-percent.
Chelly Boutott has more on one treatment that is getting patients back on their feet faster.
Aurora BayCare Medical Center offers an aortic valve replacement that is quicker than a traditional valve replacement and no sutures needed.
Cardiac therapy twice a week helped Thomas Junio recover after valve replacement surgery.  attended cardiac therapy twice a week, “It was good, it was really good ,you know, therapy here,” said Thomas Junio, patient.
Thomas had always been very active, “Mowed lawns, I snow blow all the time.” 
But Thomas had noticed he was getting tired while working.  So in July 2015 he went to see Dr. David Mathias, an interventional cardiologist at Aurora BayCare Medical Center. Tom was diagnosed with aortic valve stenosis- a narrowing of the valve which pumps blood from the heart.
“As this valve narrows what happens is you become more and more short of breath some people get chest pain,” explained Dr. David Mathias, interventional cardiologist, Aurora BayCare Medical Center. 
But it wasn’t something that needed to be fixed right away, “He wasn’t having many problems so this was something that needed to be watched,” said Dr. Mathias.
Thomas’s condition was monitored, until a year later when his symptoms got worse, “It’s just that I got too weak from mowing them lawns and that and I just couldn’t do that,” said Thomas.
So Thomas was referred to cardiothoracic surgeon Dr. Alexander Roitstein at Aurora BayCare Medical Center, “They knew his valve was going to reach a point of decline and needing to be replaced,” explained Dr. Alexander Roitstein,  cardiothoracic surgeon, Aurora BayCare Medical Center.
Dr. Rotistein performed the Perceval Valve Surgery, “Traditionally we would go in and make an incision here cut out all the leaflets and we try to sew in a new valve. Now you go in open it up, cut out the old leaflets and you have a device that you spring load it and put the valve in, position, fire it and done,” explained Dr. Roitstein.
No sutures needed – reducing the amount of time in surgery, “A normal valve that you would do, it still would be done as an open heart procedure, but if you envision you would have to put 15 stitches in each with two needless you’re talking about 30 stitches and that probably adds about a half hour- 45 minutes to the time of the operation ” explained Dr. Roitstein, “And the less time you spend time on the heart lung machine the better off the person is.”
Now Thomas is looking forward to summer, “Going back to mowing lawns and working on my antiques and baby-sitting,” Thomas said happily.
Aurora Baycare Medical Center is the only hospital in area doing the Perceval Valve Surgery. 
To learn more you can call AuroraBayCare at 866-938-0035 or email 

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