Valve Center at Saint Luke’s streamlines diagnosis and treatment

May 23, 2012

Building on a tradition of excellence in the treatment of heart valve disease, Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute has established a comprehensive multidisciplinary Valve Center dedicated to the use of new transcatheter valve replacement therapies for patients with complex valvular disease. The center unites a highly skilled team of cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons offering diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment in one convenient location.

The collaborative medical team at the Valve Center provides patients with the highest quality care, including a complete medical evaluation by dedicated heart valve specialists. Convenience is at the core of the experience in the new Valve Center, located off the main lobby in the new state-of-the-art Mid America Heart Institute. A nurse coordinator works with each patient to streamline all aspects of their care. This includes facilitating communication between patients and health care providers, scheduling appointments and procedures, as well as providing educational and emotional support. Consultations and diagnostic testing are completed in one visit, saving multiple appointments.

Once all tests and consultations have been completed, results are evaluated in a multidisciplinary team conference and a treatment plan is developed. The nurse coordinator will then contact the patient within 24 hours to outline and initiate the steps necessary for therapy.

Heart valve disease can vary from stenosis or narrowing of the valve (limiting blood flow) to incompetence or improper closure of the valve, causing blood to leak back into the heart. A range of treatment options is available, including both medical therapy and surgical repair or replacement. For patients who may be too high risk for traditional open-heart surgery, newer techniques pioneered at Saint Luke’s using transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) may be an option.

A second opinion program is offered for patients who want to be certain they understand their condition and treatment options. The highly experienced team works with referring physicians to provide independent evaluations and recommendations.

Learn more about the Valve Center.