Non-Surgical Mitral Valve Repair (MitraClip)

Mitral regurgitation (MR) is the most common type of heart valve insufficiency affecting nearly one in ten people aged 75 years and older – approximately four million people in the United States alone. MR is a progressive and life threatening condition that occurs with the leaflets of the mitral valve do not close completely, causing blood to flow backwards and leak into the left atrium of the heart during the cardiac cycle. To maintain an adequate forward flow of blood through the body, the heart compensates by increasing the size of the left ventricle, the main pumping chamber of the heart. This requires the heart to work harder, and may raise the risk of irregular heartbeats, stroke, and heart failure.

TVMR is a minimally invasive procedure that may be an option for patients with MR who are too sick for surgery. Unlike surgery, this procedure does not require opening the chest and temporarily stopping the heart. Doctors place a thin tube (catheter) through the skin into a large vein in the leg to reach the heart. A clip is then implanted onto the center of the mitral valve (the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle of the heart).

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