Heart and valve care in Birmingham
When you need advanced care for heart and valve disease, a team of experienced specialists at Ascension St. Vincent’s delivers advanced diagnostics and valve disease imaging, personalized therapeutic and surgical treatment and rehabilitation support:
- Leading technologies and advanced treatment options
- Minimally invasive catheter-based surgery, including transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR)
- Follow-up care and rehab to get you back to your life
At Ascension St. Vincent’s, we have multidisciplinary care teams dedicated to caring for your heart. Your care team brings together the expertise of cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, cardiac interventionists, and cardiac imaging specialists to diagnose and treat complex heart valve disease. Our heart and vascular specialists and surgeons are part of a national team and trained in the latest heart care testing, treatment and procedures.
Your doctor starts by listening to you, to better understand you and your symptoms. Your doctor may recommend advanced diagnostic testing. Then, your doctor works with you to create a personalized care plan that may include ongoing care and medication management, therapeutic treatment, heart surgery, and cardiac rehabilitation.
Minimally invasive heart valve replacement
If you have aortic valve disease, your doctor may recommend replacing your aortic valve. For those considered high risk for open-heart surgery due to age, previous heart surgery, stroke or other chronic conditions, TAVR may be an option. This procedure, also called transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI), is a minimally invasive surgery.
TAVR can help treat aortic valve stenosis, one of the most common heart valve problems. Aortic valve stenosis is the narrowing of the aortic heart valve, which prevents the valve from opening and closing properly. Symptoms of aortic stenosis include chest pain, fatigue, rapid heartbeat and feeling faint, tightness, and shortness of breath with activity.
During the TAVR procedure, your heart valve is replaced, so oxygen-rich blood can flow in the right direction — through your heart and body. Ask your doctor about a TAVR evaluation to see if valve replacement is right for you.
Specialists in structural heart and valve surgery
Heart and valve problems can lead to heart attack or progressive heart failure, so it’s important to talk to your doctor about early treatment options when you receive your diagnosis. For some heart valve conditions, surgery may be recommended. And whenever possible, minimally invasive techniques will be used. Minimally invasive procedures may help shorten your recovery time and lower your risk of complications.
- Aortic and mitral valvuloplasty (balloon valvuloplasty)
- Left atrial appendage closure
- Mitral valve transcatheter edge-to-edge repair (TEER)
- Paravalvular periprosthetic leak repair
- Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR)
- Transcatheter valve-in-valve implantation
Get a second opinion from a heart valve specialist
Get the confidence and peace of mind that your doctor and cardiovascular care plan are right for you. It's easy to get a second opinion at Ascension St. Vincent’s. We can review your medical records and healthcare history to answer your questions and discuss options. Talk with one of our doctors about a personalized heart care plan.
When you are facing a new diagnosis or are deciding on a surgical or therapeutic treatment plan, there’s a lot to think about. If you are looking for a second opinion for advanced heart care, our cardiologists can also connect you with the right specialists for minimally invasive surgery, including TAVR. Our heart and vascular specialists can provide a second opinion, based on our experience and as part of a national care team.
Before your appointment, check with your insurance company to find out if a second opinion is covered. We can request your medical records on your behalf, so that they can be shared with your care team before your arrival.
Heart care that focuses on the whole you
Your specialists and care team collaborate, working together for you and with you. Every appointment with your doctor starts with a conversation about any new symptoms, concerns or questions. At Ascension St. Vincent’s, your care team supports you before, during and after your heart valve procedure to help you return to the regular daily activities you love. Your doctor works with you to monitor your heart health over time, including connecting you with cardiac rehab and helping manage your medications to make sure they are working well for you.