Transcatheter aortic valve replacement

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What is a TAVR procedure?

Torso illustration with callouts showing TAVR access points

Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is a minimally invasive procedure to replace the aortic valve in patients with severe aortic stenosis. TAVR is less invasive than open-heart surgery, and the procedure typically takes less than one hour. Your heart team will determine if you should have a mild sedative or general anesthesia.

At the start of the procedure, your doctor will make a small cut in one of three typically used access routes: a small cut in the groin (1), the neck (2), or a space between your ribs (3).

The doctor will guide a thin, flexible tube with the heart valve into your artery and to your diseased valve. Throughout the procedure, your doctor will be viewing images of your heart.

The Medtronic TAVR heart valve will be placed in your diseased valve. Your new valve will work immediately. Your doctor will remove the tube and close the cut.

TAVR procedure recovery

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After the procedure, most patients spend a few hours in the intensive care unit (ICU) before transferring to a patient room. Typically, patients begin walking the same day as their Medtronic TAVR procedure and are discharged within a day or two.

Illustration of a patient in green walking toward a healthcare professional in blue while holding onto a portable IV

Before you leave the hospital, your doctor will explain what kinds of activities you can do, what medications you need to take, and when you will need to see your doctor again. You will also be given an information card about your new TAVR heart valve.

Illustration of an adult male in green shirt and blue pants walking through a park

You will be asked to return to the valve clinic to have your heart valve checked at 30 days and one year after your procedure, and as recommended by your physician. If you have concerns, discomfort, or changes in your health, be sure to let your doctor know right away.

Implant identification card

Keep your Medtronic TAVR valve information card with you at all times.

Share this card with your family members and all members of your healthcare team, including your dentist. If you need an MRI, tell your doctor that you have a Medtronic TAVR heart valve.

If you need a replacement Medtronic TAVR valve information card, please call Patient Registration services at 763-514-7115.

There are significant risks associated with TAVR procedures. Each patient is different, and the potential risks and benefits are based on individual treatment and health conditions. Speak to your doctor for more information about what you can expect.

Medtronic TAVR valve

The Medtronic TAVR heart valve is designed to work like your own heart valve. 

The metal frame is a blend of nickel and titanium. This material allows the frame to shape itself to your anatomy.

The Evolut™ FX+ valve frame has gold markers beneath the outer wrap so your doctor can better see the valve on X-ray during the procedure.

The valve also has three larger cells to help your doctor get access to your coronary arteries.

The Medtronic TAVR heart valve comes in four different sizes.

Your doctor can help you decide which Medtronic TAVR heart valve is right for you.

The Evolut™ FX+ valve has tissue leaflets and an outer wrap made from pig heart tissue.

Benefits and risks

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The Medtronic TAVR procedure is currently approved for:

  • Patients with heart disease due to symptomatic, severe aortic stenosis of their native valve
  • Patients with a failing surgical aortic valve who are at high risk or extreme risk for complications during surgery

Your doctor can determine your risk category based on several factors, including age and other medical conditions that might make surgery more dangerous for you.

Benefits of TAVR

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You should start feeling better right away. This is because your heart valve is now working properly. Some patients may take longer to feel better.

Many Medtronic TAVR patients report benefits like:

  • Having more energy
  • Breathing normally
  • Experiencing less pain
  • Experiencing fewer symptoms
  • Feeling less anxious

After the procedure, most patients can take care of themselves better and go back to everyday activities.

TAVR procedure risks

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Most medical procedures have risks. The most serious risks of the Medtronic TAVR procedure are:

  • Death
  • Stroke
  • Serious damage to the arteries
  • Serious bleeding (a bleeding event that requires a blood transfusion)
  • Need for permanent pacemaker

The chance of an adverse event from the TAVR procedure depends on many factors, including your underlying medical conditions.

The Medtronic TAVR valve cannot be used for patients who:

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  • Have a serious infection
  • Cannot take medications that reduce the risk of blood clots
  • Have a reaction to some metals

If the Medtronic TAVR valve is used in these patients, it will not work properly. This could make you feel sick or even cause death.

For some patients, the Medtronic TAVR procedure risks may outweigh the benefits. Please talk to your doctor to decide whether this therapy is right for you. 

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

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How do I know if TAVR is right for me?

TAVR may be a good option for you if you are having symptoms and if tests performed by your heart team show that it may be helpful. TAVR may also be an option for you if you are at risk for open-heart surgery. All severe aortic stenosis patients who are experiencing symptoms should be evaluated for all of their valve replacement options, including TAVR.

How many people have had the Medtronic TAVR procedure?

What is a heart team?

What is a valve clinic coordinator (VCC)?

Does my heart need to be stopped for TAVR?

How long is the TAVR procedure?

How do I know if my Medtronic TAVR heart valve is working properly?

What kinds of exercise can I do?

Is it safe to have an MRI with a Medtronic TAVR heart valve?