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0px; font: 11.0px Arial; -webkit-text-stroke: #000000; min-height: 12.0px}span.s1 {font-kerning: none}Clinical Problem:5.7 million adults in the United States have experienced heart failure, and about half those individuals will die within 5 years of diagnosis (1).

This high mortality rate points to the need for novel heart valve replacement options that can last a lifetime without needing to be replaced. Currently, two of the most common aortic valve related complications afflicting Americans are valve stenosis and aortic insufficiency. Valve stenosis is characterized by the narrowing of the heart valves while aortic insufficiency is defined by the inability of the valve to close (2). In both cases, the heart is forced to work significantly harder to offset these conditions, eventually leading to heart failure (2). To make matters worse, severe cases of aortic stenosis are considered undertreated, with up to 50% of patients who test positive for symptoms of the disease not being referred to a surgeon for further evaluation (3). These devices must be immune to any natural heart valve complications, and must also work reliably for extended periods of time.

Alternative Treatment Options:There are several other treatment options, and physicians will use factors such as age, lifestyle, anticoagulant toleration, gender, and open heart surgery risk to determine the most suitable treatment (2). Traditionally, the two types of heart valves are mechanical and tissue valves (2). Mechanical heart valves are made from strong, synthetic materials such as titanium, making it durable but also requiring patients to take life-long anticoagulation therapy (2). On the other hand, tissue valves, which are made of animal tissue and come in a variety of types such as stented, stentless, and sutureless, don’t require anticoagulants but may not last long (2). Additionally, the two types of surgery to implants these replacement valves are open heart surgery, and its shorter, less painful alternative, minimally invasive surgery (2). The Sorin Perceval Sutureless heart valve thus falls under the sutureless tissue valve category, and it is an example of minimally invasive surgery.

Advantages of the Device:The Perceval Valve is sutureless, meaning it does not require 20 to 30 sutures during implantation, something that is required for stented and stentless valves (2). This is an advantage because it shortens operation time and reduces chances of developing complications due to surgery (2). Additionally, the Perceval Valve features a collapsible stent, which makes the valve implant smaller and thus reduces the size of the incision needed for surgery (2).

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