Spotlight on OHH Heart Valve Institute

The Heart Valve Institute at Oklahoma Heart Hospital treats various disorders affecting the valves of the heart with a focus on keeping treatment as minimally invasive as possible. While other hospitals often jump to valve replacement via open-heart surgery, our team takes a different approach: diagnose and treat early, repair first, and avoid surgery whenever possible. 

Heart valve disease can typically be categorized in two ways — either leaky valves (regurgitation) or narrow valves (stenosis). When the valve does not close completely, blood leaks backward through the valve, which is called regurgitation. This results in the heart having to work harder to pump blood. With stenosis, the opening of the valve narrows. Blood flow is limited, and the heart has to pump with more force in order to move blood where it needs to go. These two types of malfunctions can appear individually or together and are a factor in heart failure. 

The multi-disciplinary team at the OHH Heart Valve Institute includes general cardiologists, interventional cardiologists, cardiovascular surgeons, and vascular surgeons. These physicians work closely together on each patient’s case to evaluate the problem and recommend the best course of treatment, which can range from lifestyle changes to minimally invasive procedures to open-heart surgery, depending on the severity of disease.

When a patient is referred to the institute, our team of specialists will help navigate both the disease and treatment process and answer any questions. We strive to be as efficient as possible, which means patients will undergo an extensive diagnostic workup that involves multiple specialties on the day of their appointment. Tests may include exams, x-rays, and various types of echocardiography

While open-heart surgery is sometimes necessary for valve replacement, the OHH team uses less invasive approaches whenever possible. Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is a minimally invasive technique using a catheter to replace the aortic valve rather than full open-heart surgery. Not only is surgery time reduced, but the recovery is much quicker and easier for the patient. Oklahoma Heart Hospital is the most experienced TAVR center in Oklahoma, and we have patients travel from all over the state and country to receive treatment. 

If you’ve been diagnosed with a heart valve disorder or have a family history of valve disorders, contact the OHH Heart Valve Institute to schedule an appointment today.