May 15, 2008 Houston: Physicians at the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center at The Methodist Hospital in Houston now close certain types of leaky heart valves through a tiny puncture in the groin, using live 3D imaging for precise guidance. Methodist offers this combination treatment as an alternative to open heart surgery.
Drs. Sashi Guthikonda (Native of Tenali, grown up in Hyderabad) and Neal Kleiman, interventional cardiologists at Methodist, recently used a catheter to close a leak surrounding a 65 year old patient’s mitral valve, rather than exposing her to a potential 4th open heart surgery. The leak was causing such damage to her blood that she was constantly weak and needed multiple blood transfusions.
“Many physicians and cardiologists don’t know this procedure is available at all, but closing a leaky valve this way saves our patients from the trauma of open heart surgery,” said Guthikonda, who learned this procedure during his fellowship at Emory University Medical Center. “This procedure, which only requires a 3 mm incision, leads to significantly less pain, much faster recovery and much lower overall risk than surgery.”