100th TAVR Procedure Performed by Baptist Heart & Vascular Institute

October 6, 2016 – Baptist Heart & Vascular Institute (BHVI) has performed its 100th Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) procedure. The procedure was completed on Oct. 4.

This is significant because this life saving procedure may be the only hope for patients considered too high risk for traditional open heart surgery. This is a tremendous milestone for BHVI and a great benefit to the people in the Northwest Florida area who need this level of advanced care.

"Reaching this milestone is a testament to the teamwork and dedication of our team at Baptist Hospital," says Luther I. Carter, M.D., FACC, FSCAI, interventional cardiologist. "The 100th TAVR was performed on a 90 year old individual who was too high risk for standard treatment. The patient was up and walking six hours after the procedure and was discharged the following day in great spirits and without any shortness of breath symptoms. This leading edge technology and service is something we are all proud of, and I appreciate every team member involved in developing our successful structural heart program."

TAVR is saving people and improving the quality of life for patients who otherwise had no options. BHVI is the first team of cardiovascular specialists in the Florida Panhandle and one of the select programs in the nation to offer TAVR for patients with severe aortic stenosis who are not candidates for traditional open heart surgery.

"In experienced hands, TAVR has been shown to be lower risk than surgical replacement in elderly patients," says says F. James Fleischhauer, M.D., FACC interventional cardiologist. "TAVR is a state-of-the-art treatment for aortic valve disease that is approved for moderate risk, high risk, inoperable patients, and for those who have a preexisting surgical valve who warrant replacement. Our pioneering experience with this procedure in our community allows us to best decide what treatment is optimal for every patient with aortic valve disease."

Aortic stenosis is a thickening of the aortic valve opening that restricts normal blood flow to the entire body. Patients who suffer from aortic stenosis often experience symptoms that can restrict normal day-to-day activities, such as walking short distances or climbing stairs, due to shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain or fatigue. Severe aortic stenosis is a serious problem. If left untreated and not repaired it is potentially fatal. Studies indicate that 50 percent of severe aortic stenosis patients will not survive more than an average of two years after the onset of symptoms.

The multidisciplinary TAVR team at BHVI is unique to the Northwest Florida area. Board certified interventional cardiologists partner with a highly skilled cardiothoracic surgeons to complete the procedure.

To make an appointment with the physicians of BHVI, call at 850.484.6500 or visit eBaptistHealthCare.org to learn more about the many innovative cardiovascular procedures offered.