If you have been told you need heart valve surgery, we urge you to call the Center for Heart Valve Disease at Valley for a second opinion. 

Treatment of heart valve disease varies greatly nationwide. At the Center for Heart Valve Disease, our surgeons have a special interest in repairing heart valves.

Heart Valve Replacement vs. Repair

For heart valve disease that is affecting your quality of life, the primary treatment is either repairing or replacing the damaged valve. 

  • Repair or replace: Replacement heart valves do not last as long as your natural valves. That’s why Valley’s approach is to repair rather than replace valves whenever possible.
  • Discuss your full range of options: We follow a “shared-decision making” model at Valley. That means we review each case individually and discuss with you all the risks and benefits of repair or replacement. We encourage you to share your concerns with us so you understand the full range of options available. Together, we can come to the right decision for you.
  • Understanding your options based on new standards of care: With our experience and focus on research, we are able to recommend the latest standards of care. For example, for aortic stenosis, studies suggest that patients without aortic stenosis symptoms can benefit from earlier surgical interventions, including TAVR (transcatheter aortic valve replacement).

Heart Valve Repair and Replacement Options at Valley

Heart valve repair and replacement at Valley includes the following options:

  • Aortic stenosis: Valve specialists at Valley perform the minimally invasive TAVR procedure to replace the aortic valve in patients with severe aortic stenosis.
  • Aortic regurgitation: Valley’s Thoracic Aneurysm Surveillance Program has experience treating aneurysms associated with severely leaking aortic valves by manipulating aspects of the valve. Through this experience, cardiac surgeons at Valley are now using similar aortic valve repair techniques to address aortic regurgitation.
  • Mitral regurgitation: Our valve specialists use the minimally invasive procedure, MitraClip, to treat patients with severe, degenerative mitral regurgitation who are eligible for surgery.
  • Mitral valve stenosis: Our specialists use mitral balloon valvuloplasty, a minimally invasive procedure used to restore normal blood flow and reduce pressure in the heart and lung for patients with mitral valve stenosis.

Why Choose Valley for Heart Valve Replacement and Repair?

  • Patient and family-focused care: All decisions about your treatment are collaborative. Our heart team works together to recommend the most effective options, keeping you and your family's needs in mind. 
  • Minimally invasive techniques: Our surgeons routinely use minimally invasive techniques to treat heart valve disease, which leads to faster recovery and a return to normal activities quickly.
  • High volume expertise: The Center for Heart Valve Disease at Valley has performed more than 2,100 valve procedures since 2006. This number includes both surgical and minimally invasive procedures, including the numbers below.
  • Aortic valve surgery: The cardiac surgery team at Valley has performed more than 1,400 aortic valve replacements and repairs. These aortic valve surgeries include patients with aortic valve disease only, aortic valve issues plus a coronary artery bypass, and patients with multiple damaged valves.
  • Mitral valve surgery: The cardiac surgery team at Valley has performed more than 830 mitral valve procedures. These included mitral valve repairs and/or replacements and combined procedures that treated mitral valves plus other issues, including damaged aortic valves, coronary artery bypass, and aortic surgery.
  • Partnership with Cleveland Clinic: Our specialists, including our cardiac surgeons, can call a surgical colleague at the Cleveland Clinic and collaborate on a patient’s case within the same day if required. This allows patients to receive a second opinion from two experts in real-time, ensuring they feel supported in their decision making.
  • Repairing leaky valves: In 2015, The Valley heart team was the first in Bergen, Passaic and Rockland counties to use the nonsurgical MitraClip procedure to repair leaking mitral valves. This minimally invasive procedure is used to repair mitral regurgitation, also known as mitral valve regurgitation.
  • Minimally invasive options for mitral valve stenosis: Structural heart cardiologists at Valley perform the minimally invasive procedure, mitral balloon valvuloplasty, to restore normal blood flow and reduce heart and lung pressure in patients with mitral valve stenosis. Most patients are often able to return home the following day.
  • Positive patient outcomes for TAVR: A key indicator of success for the TAVR procedure to treat aortic stenosis is whether there are leaks around the replaced valve afterward. These leaks are referred to as “paravalvular leaks.” At Valley, 100 percent of our TAVR patients had no or only mild paravalvular leakage on their follow-up echocardiogram 30 days after the procedure.