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Edwards SAPIEN Transcatheter Heart Valve

TAVR: An Innovative Lifesaver

Carle now offers a lifesaving procedure for patients at risk for heart failure who previously had no other options.

Learn more about this procedure from this patient's story »

What is TAVR?

Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is an exciting new alternative for patients with severe aortic stenosis who can't have open heart surgery.

With severe stenosis, buildup in the aortic valve prevents blood from flowing freely from the heart to the body. Patients suffer shortness of breath, chest pain, fatigue, irregular heartbeat, even sudden death - and many aren't treated because of their high risk for surgery. Until now, these patients had no other treatment option and were given an average of two years to live. That's why Carle committed to bringing TAVR to east central Illinois.

The narrowed valve allows less blood to flow through, and as a result, less oxygen-rich blood is pumped out to the body.

Cross-section of heart with Edwards SAPIEN Transcatheter Heart Valve in place.

How does it work?

Carle experts insert a small, collapsible by catheter through a small incision in the thigh and guide it to the chest using X-ray. Once inside the aorta, the replacement expands to replace the damaged valve. The new valve allows blood to flow through immediately, adding years to the patient's life in an instant.

What are the benefits?

  • Provides hope for patients with severe aortic stenosis who are too sick for open heart surgery
  • Minimally invasive procedure with less scarring, faster healing time and shorter hospital stay than open heart surgery
  • Recovery time of three days or less

Why choose Carle for TAVR?

Carle Heart and Vascular Institute is one of the only providers in the region offering this innovative procedure since its FDA approval in 2011. Because TAVR requires expertise from several heart disciplines, our team approach is what makes this procedure successful. Our heart surgeons, interventional cardiologists, anesthesiologists, echocardiographers and cath lab staff have extensive training in TAVR. They work together to evaluate patients and ensure the best outcomes.

Is TAVR right for me?

If you have been diagnosed with severe aortic stenosis and cannot have open heart valve replacement, ask your physician for a referral to Carle Heart and Vascular Institute. Our team will provide comprehensive evaluation to determine if you are a candidate for TAVR.

For more information on TAVR, visit


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