Procedure provides treatment option for patients who cannot undergo traditional
open-heart valve replacement surgery
Officials at Boca Raton Regional Hospital today announced the establishment
of the Fern F. Steinfeld Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement Center.
This latest component of the Hospital’s Christine E. Lynn Heart
& Vascular Institute (LHVI) now provides a highly therapeutic treatment
option for patients with symptomatic aortic stenosis and who are considered
a high risk for standard valve replacement surgery.
Aortic valve stenosis is a type of heart disease in which the valve that
regulates blood flow from the heart is narrowed and prevented from opening
fully. It is estimated that patients with severe aortic stenosis have
about a 50 percent chance of living just two years without aortic valve
Regretfully, many of these patients are of advanced age or have co-existing
health issues that disqualify them for traditional valve replacement.
Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement or TAVR is a minimally invasive
surgical technique that greatly reduces the procedural risk for these
As opposed to accessing the heart through a large incision in the chest,
TAVR delivers the artificial replacement valve through a catheter. Similar
to a stent placement in an artery, the catheter is inserted through a
small incision in the groin or between the ribs, thus eliminating the
need to surgically separate the chest.
During the procedure, the replacement valve collapses to a very small
diameter and is attached to a balloon device. The new valve is then positioned
inside the natural aortic valve, inflated and pushes the faulty valve
aside. The replacement valve begins to function as soon as the balloon
deflates to permit the flow of blood.
Patients usually experience immediate benefit in terms of improved blood
circulation. Because the valve replacement is done via minimally invasive
technique, most patients can expect a much faster recovery period than
they would from the conventional open-heart procedure.
The Center is led by Carlos A. Velez, MD, FACC, FSCAI, who serves as Director
of Structural Heart Disease Interventions at LHVI. Dr. Velez is a specialist
in TAVR and has served on the faculty of some of the nation’s most
prestigious heart programs including those at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit,
Michigan, Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, Louisiana and the Swedish
Medical Center in Seattle, Washington.
“Dr. Velez brings impeccable credentials and experience to our TAVR
Center,” said Richard Cartledge, MD, FACS and Chief of Cardiac Surgery
at Boca Raton Regional Hospital. “We, along with our patients, are
most fortunate to have a clinician of his caliber heading this most important
addition to our capabilities at the Lynn Heart & Vascular Institute.”
About Boca Raton Regional Hospital – Advancing the boundaries of medicine.
Boca Raton Regional Hospital is an advanced, tertiary medical center
(BRRH.com) with 400 beds and more than 800 primary and specialty physicians on staff.
The Hospital is a recognized leader in oncology, cardiovascular disease
and surgery, minimally invasive surgery, orthopedics, women’s health,
emergency medicine and the neurosciences, all of which offer state-of-the-art
diagnostic and imaging capabilities. The Hospital is a designated Comprehensive
Stroke Center by the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA).
Boca Raton Regional Hospital is the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished
Hospital Award for Clinical Excellence™ for 10 years running and
was named one of America’s 50 Best Hospitals in 2011, 2012, 2013
and 2014, both by Healthgrades®. Boca Raton Regional Hospital was
also recognized in
U.S. News & World Report’s 2015–2016 Best Hospitals listing as a top-ranked hospital in the
South Florida metropolitan area for the fourth time in the last five years.
Alexandra Schilling, 561.955.4706
Communications Specialist, Marketing