Device reducing open heart surgeries shows promising three-year results

March 13, 2013
By Nick Budnick, The Oregonian

Technology to replace the aortic valve without open heart surgery continues to prove itself, new research shows.

People implanted with the transcather aortic valve replacement device called Sapien had a similar death rate three years afterward to those who had heart surgery instead, according to a clinical trial presented Monday at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology.

The device, made by Edwards Lifesciences Corp, lets surgeons replace the aortic valve by threading instruments through an artery in the groin area. Already used in Europe, the device was initially approved in the U.S. only for people too fragile for conventional surgery.

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