Jefferson University Hospitals

Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)

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Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) is an innovative treatment for aortic stenosis – a condition caused by a narrowing of the heart valve that allows blood to exit the heart. Common symptoms include chest pain, feeling short of breath with activities completed previously with ease, difficulty walking long distances or up steps, and/or having episodes of feeling dizzy or lightheaded.

Why is TAVR used?

TAVR uses a catheter-based delivery system to place an expandable heart valve into the body through small openings in the groin or chest – without the need for an open heart surgery. Our team of interventional cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, echocardiographers, anesthesiologists and radiologists will work together to evaluate you for this procedure.

One study, published in The Lancet, describes TAVR as the preferred treatment alternative for people who have otherwise been deemed inoperable and unable to undergo open surgical valve replacement. Researchers found that the procedure revealed optimal results, including a low, 11 percent rate of hospital readmission after the procedure, a 12 percent rate of needing a pacemaker after the TAVR procedure, with a shorter hospital stay of about four days on average. Of those involved in the study, 94 percent felt symptoms had improved and remained symptom-free after one year.

What does TAVR involve?

Without removing the old, damaged valve, the TAVR procedure involves placing a replacement valve into the aortic valve's location through a catheter. Performed through very small openings, the TAVR procedure can be performed using one of four different techniques:

  • Entering through the artery in the groin (transfemoral)
  • Entering from between two ribs under the left breast (transapical)
  • Entering through a small incision next to the sternum (transaortic)
  • Entering through the area below the clavicle, or collarbone (trans-subclavin)

Meet Our TAVR Team

The goal of Jefferson's TAVR program is to improve your quality of life. We provide a holistic team-based approach in order to identify a personalized treatment plan. When you start your TAVR journey with our team, you can expect:

  • Experienced providers who are known experts in the field
  • Multiple anesthesia options which help promote quicker recovery
  • Early discharge program

Make an Appointment

If you would like more information or determine if TAVR is appropriate for you, please call Rebecca Marcantuono CRNP, our heart valve coordinator, at 215-955-2918.

To schedule an appointment, please call 1-800-JEFF-NOW (800-533-5669) or