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Aortic Stenosis

Aortic stenosis is a narrowing of the aortic valve opening which restricts normal blood flow. It can be caused by a birth defect, rheumatic fever, radiation therapy, or aging.

Aortic valve diagramThe heart is forced to work harder to push blood through the aortic valve leading to symptoms such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting. Aortic valve replacement (AVR) through open-heart surgery is the most common treatment for patients with aortic stenosis. 

In elderly patients, a build-up of calcium in the aortic valve can lead to severe aortic stenosis increasing the risk of heart failure. Those with advanced age or serious medical conditions may not be good candidates for surgery. 

The transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is a promising new treatment for patients with severe aortic stenosis who are not ideal candidates for traditional open heart surgery.

In the video below, Drs. John Robb and Joseph DeSimone from the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Heart and Vascular Center talk about Aortic Stenosis and TAVR.

Learn more about TAVR

TAVR patient stories

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