How Is Pulmonary Valve Replacement Performed?
When replacement of the pulmonary valve is recommended, it can be achieved two ways: surgery and catheterization. Lurie Children’s has experts in both areas so all patients can be managed successfully.
Pulmonary valve replacement is a standard procedure and the most common surgery in adults with congenital heart disease. Surgical placement of a bio-prosthetic valve usually requires less than a week in the hospital to recover.
The location of the valve is commonly referred to as the “outflow tract”, and all sizes and shapes can be managed successfully via the surgical approach.
Newer, less invasive transcatheter approaches have been developed to place a new pulmonary valve. In the USA, there are two valves FDA-approved for trans-catheter pulmonary valve replacement in dysfunction conduits. The valves can also be placed off label in large native outflow tracts. As the chest does not need to be re-opened, the recovery time is much shorter and usually only requires an overnight observation. However, with only two types of valves available, sometimes the anatomy is not suitable for a catheter-based valve, and these patients require the surgical approach instead.