One of the most common procedures performed in cardiac surgery is heart valve replacement, which makes up nearly a quarter of the total procedural volume. According to international market research and consulting firm, iData Research, over 182,000 heart valve replacements per year are performed in the United States. The primary method for treating heart valve conditions is through open surgery to place a replacement valve.

When it comes to types of heart valve replacements, there are generally four main types:

  • Aortic valve replacement
  • Mitral valve replacement
  • Tricuspid valve replacement
  • Pulmonary valve replacement

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Aortic Valve Replacement

The aortic valve is one of four valves that regulate blood flow throughout the heart. Procedures are usually performed to treat disease affecting the aortic valve.

Open heart surgery is the primary method performed to replace a diseased aortic valve. Another method of aortic valve replacement is transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), which is a minimally invasive replacement approach. Doctors access the heart through a vessel in the leg or incision in the chest, then an expandable aortic valve is inserted through the incision, which travels to the heart and expands to create an artificial aortic valve.

Mitral Valve Replacement

Mitral valve replacements are usually performed to treat disease that affects the mitral valve. This procedure is usually performed with open-heart surgery that involves an incision in the chest. Some cases may be performed with minimally invasive heart surgery.

Valve repair may include patching holes in the valve, reconnecting valve leaflets, or annuloplasty, where the leaflets of the mitral valve are reinforced to stop leaking of the mitral valve. Doctors may perform certain repairs using long, thin catheters and other devices. Mitral valve replacement involves replacing the valve with a mechanical or sometimes a tissue valve.

Tricuspid Valve Replacement

Disease in the tricuspid valve, another major heart valve, is often caused by a heart defect at birth.

Tricuspid valve replacement or repair is traditionally performed via open-heart surgery and sternotomy (opening of the chest bone). Doctors will wire the bone back together after the procedure. If the patient is getting a valve repair, the tricuspid valve is repaired using patches witch patch holes or tears in the valve.

If the patient is getting a valve replacement, the valve is replaced with a mechanical valve, which is performed via open-heart surgery or, sometimes, using minimally invasive methods.

Pulmonary Valve Replacement

Pulmonary valve replacement or repair is also traditionally performed via open-heart surgery and sternotomy. Repair procedures may include separating fused valve leaflets, reconstructing leaflets and more. Valve replacement usually includes the removal of the pulmonary valve, which is then replaced by a mechanical or biological valve.

Pulmonary valve replacement can also be performed using minimally invasive procedures. The most common type of minimally invasive pulmonary valve replacement is transcatheter pulmonary valve replacement. During this procedure, a catheter is inserted into a larger blood vessel in the groin or chest and is guided to the heart.  A balloon-expandable replacement valve is then deployed into place.

For More Information

More research on the heart valve replacement market can be found in the full report suite, entitled U.S. Market Report Suite for Cardiac Surgery and Heart Valve Devices, which provides a comprehensive report on units sold, market values, average selling prices, procedure volumes, forecasts, as well as detailed competitive market shares and analysis of all major competitors.

This cardiac surgery suite of reports include segments for tissue heart valves, mechanical heart valves, annuloplasty repair, transcatheter heart valve repair, transcatheter heart valve replacement, on-pump coronary artery bypass, off-pump coronary artery bypass, endoscopic vessel harvesting, anastomosis assist, transmyocardial revascularization, ventricular assist devices, intra-aortic balloon pumps, artificial heart replacement devices, remote hemodynamic monitoring systems, patent foramen ovale closure devices, atrial septal defect closure devices, ventricular septal defect closure devices and left atrial appendage devices closure devices.