The modern treatment of aortic valve disease is rapidly changing. For decades, patients with aortic valve disease have undergone open-heart surgery to have their aortic valve replaced or repaired. However, over the past 10 years, transcatheter valve implantation (TAVI) strategies have become increasingly common in the treatment of symptomatic severe aortic stenosis, and where TAVI procedures were once limited to high-risk patients who were not eligible to undergo traditional open-heart surgery, recent studies have suggested that TAVI is safe and feasible in lower-risk patients with severe aortic stenosis.
The TAVI program was launched at the NBHC in 2010, and the first TAVI case in Atlantic Canada was performed in April of that year. The TAVI program at the NBHC exemplifies the “heart team” approach to the treatment of aortic valve stenosis, including members from clinical cardiology, interventional cardiology, cardiac surgery, cardiac anaesthesia and interventional radiology that have come together over the years to create a world-class, leading-edge program with excellent patient outcomes. In 2019, the 400th patient received a TAVI at the NBHC representing an important milestone for New Brunswick and all of Atlantic Canada.
The program has also demonstrated important advances over the years with almost all patients now undergoing TAVI using a percutaneous transfemoral approach (no incision) and with the aid of conscious sedation (no general anaesthetic), neither of which were performed as recently as 2015. The result is that patients no longer go to the intensive care unit post-procedure and are discharged home the following day.
For more information regarding this program, including whether or not you or your patient is a candidate, please do not hesitate to contact us by phone at 506-648-7020, by fax 506-648-6110 or by email at hc.nb@HorizonNB.ca.