TAVI procedure is used to treat most complex Aortic Stenosis conditions. This procedure is either performed on children or people who are not eligible for the other surgical procedures. The various steps involved in the TAVI procedure are as under:
Before The Procedure
Preparation of Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation
The patient needs to undergo certain tests before the procedure, such as.
- CT scan
- Blood tests
- Lung tests
- X rays
- Quit smoking before the surgery as it can hamper the healing process
- The doctor may advise you to stop certain medications before the surgery, such as blood thinners ( warfarin, aspirin), over the counter medications, supplements, herbs, vitamins etc.
- The patient needs to stop eating and drinking several hours before the surgery to prevent nausea and aspiration during the surgery.
During The Procedure
- STEP 1:The area of the body where TAVI has to be performed is numbed using general anaesthetics.
- STEP 2:Balloon valvuloplasty is performed using a catheter (hollow tube) with a balloon attached to one of its tips. This catheter is inserted into an artery either via the groin or by making a keyhole incision on the side of the arm, leg or chest.
- STEP 3:The catheter is then directed toward the patient’s heart and positioned at the opening of the aortic valve.
- STEP 4:In this step, the balloon attached to the catheter is gently inflated with the aim to make room for the placement of a new tissue valve.
- STEP 5: The new tissue valve is placed in position and expanded using a balloon.
- STEP 6: The balloon is then deflated and removed along with the catheter.
Finally, a new valve has replaced the damaged valve.
After The Procedure
The patient has to spend a day or two in the intensive care unit for monitoring purposes. However, the overall recovery time is around 12 weeks. After surgery, most people remain asymptomatic and start to feel better. However, they have to take blood-thinning medications for a lifetime to prevent blood clots formation.
The patient needs to visit the hospital 1 to 2 weeks after TAVI, then after 1 month, 2-3 months and 1 year after TAVI.