Help! We are from Canada, and we have all the information that we need on minimally invasive surgery. We have been desperately searching for a physician, either in Canada or the U.S.A. who will perform "minimally invasive aortic heart valve surgery". Also, please supply the general fee that is charged for this procedure. Thanks.
You may have a hard time finding a surgeon to do minimally invasive aortic replacement, outside such centers at CCF, the Mayo, etc. I understand there are some technical issues with aortic surgery that can demand the open chest version.
However, as someone who has had both minimally invasive and maximally invasive (just to inject a little levity...), I can tell you that the healing process isn't that much different. There is some different kinds of pain associated with each, and of course the smaller incision heals faster. But my thoracotomy incision (one way of doing minimally invasive surgery) hurt more intensely than the sternotomy, which hurt less for longer.
My point is just that I believe you're best served by finding a surgeon you've researched and trust, and let him or her make the decision on the best way to approach your surgery.
Shannon, that's an interesting reply. I have been real hip on the idea of the minimally invasive proceedure and was wondering how it measured up to the full sternal approach. I live in Arizona and no one here does the minimally invasive procedure. Thanks for the comparison. Unless you've been through something like that before you have nothing to go on.
Reply to Jill -- Have you talked with anyone at the Arizona Heart Institute? I understand they have done the minimally invasive surgery approach, though I don't know if they've applied it to aortic repair/replacement. I'd be interested to know that.
Also, I forgot to mention that sometimes minimally invasive surgery turns into the other approach (that's what happened to me) and again, you just have to really trust your surgeon. That's the most important thing.
Hi Michelle, I am from Montreal Canada and had my aortic valve replaced with a homograft 05 29 99. In the beginning while I was researching I was set on the min inv surgery and it wasn't easy finding someone to do it.I did come into contact with a few surgeons that knew how to do it but told me right out they preffered the old full open chest way. My scar is about 9 inches long and looks like someone took a pink pen and drew a line down my chest...hardly noticable.While I was in the hospital the person next to me had the min inv surgery for aortic replacement and seemed to be in more pain than I was. The biggest point is that min inv does not mean min pain. The sternum is an area that has few nerve endings and thus transmit fewer pain impulses to the brain. You could go to CTSNET.org and go to SURGEONS and then tap on COUNTRY and choose CANADA and you will have a list of all surgeons in Canada by city. Tap on the surgeons name and you will find a mini Biography on the surgeon as well as their speciality. Some list Min Inv Surgery. Remeber do not go into the surgery with the main focus being the smallest scar but rather pick the best surgeon to do the job. Best of luck...Mario
Shannon, thanks for the info on AHI. I haven't talked to anyone specifically, I don't expect to have to have my valve replaced soon (I've been told within 10 years). When it does come time I'll discuss with my cardiologist who he suggests. BTW, I don't much care for Dr. Deitrich who is the main surgeon at AHI so I don't think I'd go there unless my cardiologist thinks that would be best. Since reading your reply and Marios I'm thinking the full sternal approach might not be bad. At least there is optimal viewing. Actually what scares me the most is going on bypass. I don't like that whole idea (of course, not much choice in that is there!). Take care. Thanks!
There may be some side effects from being on pump including a mild change in mental status, depression and mild memory loss due to very prolonged times on pump. This is generally not seen in shorter more standard CABG procedures however.
Hi...a year ago I had minimally invasive aortic valve replacement surgery by a doctor who I think is the best in the world...(no kidding) The surgeon is Dr. Delos Cosgrove..I am 58..doing well and following the advice of my hometown cardiologist. We are so lucky to have him.
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