Aortic Valve Surgery is repair or replacement of the aortic valve, located between the left ventricle and the aorta (the artery that sends blood out of the heart). The surgery is required when the aortic valve leaks back into the heart (aortic regurgitation) or its flaps become stiff and inflexible (aortic stenosis), blocking blood flow. This causes aortic valve disease. The surgery can be performed using traditional surgery techniques or minimally invasive approaches.
Types of aortic valve surgery
- Traditional Aortic Valve Surgery - During traditional aortic valve surgery, the surgeon makes a 6-8 inch incision down the center of the chest, and the breastbone is divided in half to get access to the heart. The heart valves are then replaced or repaired.
- Minimally Invasive Aortic Valve Surgery - During this surgery the surgeon makes a smaller incision in the upper midline of the chest or the upper right side of the chest and work is done through the smaller incision, sometimes between the rib spaces.
Benefits of minimally invasive aortic valve surgery
- Quick recovery time
- Less scarring
- Faster return to daily activities