It’s been one heck of a year for 75-year-old Deloris Gislar from Ottawa, Kansas. She’s had three kinds of cancer, five surgeries, radiation and countless tests and blood draws. But when she woke up one night and couldn’t breathe, doctors discovered a new problem…fluid on her lungs because her heart wasn’t pumping properly. Turns out she had a condidion called aortic valve stenosis, a narrowing of the main valve out of the pumping chamber of the heart. Without a valve replacement, she could die. But because of her weakened condition from her other medical problems, she was not a candidate for the gold-standard treatment, open-heart valve replacement.
Deloris came to The Center for Advanced Heart Care at The University of Kansas Health System, and doctors found her the perfect candidate for a much less invasive, but equally effective treatment called transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). Health System doctors helped pioneer the procedure during clinical trials. Instead of opening her chest to reach the bad aortic valve, doctors repaired the valve without removing the old, damaged valve. They wedged a replacement valve into the aortic valve’s place using a catheter. Once the new valve was expanded, it pushed the old valve out of the way and the tissue in the replacement valve took over the job of regulating blood flow.
The change in Deloris is amazing. She has no problem breathing, a lot more energy, and instead of a 10 day hospital stay like her husband who had heart surgery more than 20 years ago, she was able to go home the next day.
In the video, Dr. Peter Tadros, an interventional cardiologist, describes Deloris’ dire condition, and how the TAVR procedure was able to help when the traditional approach would have been too much for her.
Also on the video is Dr. Trip Zorn, a cardiothoracic surgeon, who worked with Dr. Tadros together in one special operating room called a hybred suite so that both can do their part of the procedure without moving the patient. Dr. Zorn explains how this procedure is a lifesaver for those who wouldn’t survive open-heart surgery.
We also hear from the patient, Deloris Gislar, who explained her medical problems from her hospital bed before the procedure. Then, after the procedure, while in recovery, she talks about how much better she feels already.
The video also includes TV friendly shots from the TAVR procedure.