Game-Changing Technology for Heart Patients

Game-Changing Technology for Heart Patients

Transcatheter Clip Provides Nonsurgical Repair of Heart Valve

Image of the Mitraclip deviceMitral regurgitation is the most common type of heart valve insufficiency, affecting nearly one in 10 people who are 75 years and older—approximately four million people in the United States. Left untreated, this disorder may lead to congestive heart failure and, eventually, loss of life.

Surgically repairing or completely replacing the faulty mitral valve remains a good option for patients who are strong enough to undergo open-heart surgery. However, many elderly patients simply cannot endure a stressful operation.

Older patients with mitral valve regurgitation, many of whom are not candidates for traditional heart surgery, now have an option. The MitraClip®, a small metal clip less than one inch long, can be inserted via a delivery catheter through the groin and into the heart to repair the leak and improve blood flow—all without surgery.

“This is a game-changer for many heart disease patients,” said Steven Burstein MD, medical director of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories at PIH Health Good Samaritan Hospital. “The patient can usually go home the next day to resume normal activities. In the majority of cases, patients report immediate relief from their previous symptoms.”

Frank Randall, a 91-year-old Newport Beach resident, recently had the procedure to receive a MitraClip, and he’s quite pleased with the results.

“My experience was very easy—I only spent one night in the hospital and was released the very next day,” he said. “Before the procedure, I had very low energy, which made it hard to do everyday things. But since the procedure, I have a lot more energy, and I’m feeling great.”