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Heart Valve Replacement Alternative

Is TAVR Right For You?

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Learn more about this less invasive heart valve surgery.

We are the first Northland hospital to perform the transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedure, an innovative approach to treating people in need of a heart valve replacement.

Approximately 250,000 people in the U.S. have severe symptomatic aortic stenosis and need their aortic valve replaced. Some of those people, because of their age or health condition, cannot have open heart surgery. TAVR, a minimally invasive procedure, gives you a possible alternative. 

TAVR Qualifications

When you are diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis, our heart team evaluates your condition to determine if you are a candidate for TAVR. Currently, TAVR is approved in the U.S. for aortic valve replacement for high and intermediate risk patients who meet specific criteria.

How TAVR Works

TAVR is a less invasive technique during which a specially-trained cardiovascular specialist inserts a new aortic valve inside the damaged one using a catheter. The procedure lasts approximately 1.5 hours, and you will be under general anesthesia.

Benefits of TAVR

TAVR reduces your length of stay in the hospital, shortens your recovery period and relieves your aortic stenosis symptoms. Most patients are mobile the same day as their procedure. With TAVR, you can avoid many of the risks associated with open heart surgery. In the long term, the procedure can improve your quality of life.

Your Heart Team

Should you be a candidate for TAVR, a dedicated team of interventional cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, anesthesiologists and clinical staff members will be with you every step of the way. Our cardiovascular specialists trained at the German Munich Center, where heart surgeons perform more than 500 TAVR procedures each year. Your heart team evaluates and monitors you in our valve clinic before and after your TAVR procedure.

Watch and Learn

Our videos provide details about the TAVR procedure. To find out if you are a candidate for TAVR, talk with your cardiologist.

First TAVR Patient

Jim Dallas, 95, first TAVR patient

Jim Dallas, 95, was the first TAVR patient at NKCH.

TAVR Patient at 92

Hilde Zitzwitz

Hilde doesn't regret being the first female TAVR patient at NKCH.

TAVR Heart Team

Keith Allen, MD

Keith Allen, MD
Cardiothoracic Surgeon

Zafir Hawa, MD

Zafir Hawa, MD, FACC, FSCAI
Interventional Cardiologist

James Mitchell, MD

James Mitchell, MD, FACC
Interventional Cardiologist

Alexander Pak, MD

Alexander Pak, MD
Cardiothoracic Surgeon