The Structural Heart & Valve Disease Program at Brookwood Baptist Health
The Structural Heart and Valve program at Brookwood Baptist Health delivers a highly-personalized, innovative approach to treating heart valve disease and structural heart conditions.
A structural heart and valve disease diagnosis can be scary. But cutting-edge treatment options at Brookwood Baptist Health mean a healthier heart is within reach. From a better quality of life and reduced symptoms, to a potentially longer life, and less
work for your heart muscle – you have everything to gain.
Brookwood Baptist Health offers treatment for Structural Heart & Valve disease at three convenient locations: Brookwood Baptist Medical Center (Homewood, AL), Princeton Baptist Medical Center (Birmingham, AL) and Shelby Baptist Medical Center (Alabaster,
AL). Our program utilizes the Heart Team approach, bringing together specialists from cardiology, endovascular surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, interventional radiology and advanced cardiovascular imaging. With so many ways to treat heart disease
– in clinic, the cath lab, or in the operating room – the Heart Team approach means patients receive an individualized plan for care.
The Structural Heart & Valve program treats a range of conditions affecting the Aortic, Mitral and Tricuspid Valves, as well as the structure of the heart.
‘Structural heart disease’ covers a large variety of heart conditions that aren’t generally related to coronary disease and refers to both valvular heart disease and any defect within the heart. Many defects can be repaired percutaneously
via catheter, instead of through open-heart surgery.
An Alternative to Open Heart Surgery
When a leaky mitral valve slowed Betty Summerford down, and open-heart surgery wasn’t an option, the minimally invasive MitraClip procedure gave her back her quality of life.
Structural heart and valve disease decision-making is often highly complex requiring close collaboration between our specialists, including imaging specialists, structural interventionalists and cardiac surgeons.
The “Heart Team” approach means team members meet with patients during clinic visits to develop a patient-centered, comprehensive plan, including the latest treatment options.
A highly trained team of specialists from multiple heart and vascular specialties at Brookwood and Princeton, work together with patients on a care plan. Depending on the hospital, the care team may include cardiothoracic surgeons, interventional cardiologists, cardiac imaging specialists, as well as access to a nurse before, during and after the procedure, plus ongoing education.
KATHLEEN GLOVER, MitraClip patient, December 2015 Everything was wonderful, including all the doctors, nurses and the structural heart and valve team. If you had seen me before surgery, and then after, you would not have known me. I feel so much better, and the experience was wonderful.
JOHN NORRIS, Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) patient, October 2015 I have done better after this surgery than any other surgery. If you have to have it done, this is the way to go. My wife says I look younger, everybody does, I look like I used to... it’s amazing.
DOROTHY PURVIS, MitraClip patient, November 2015 It was a good experience–the hospital gave me lots of attention, and I felt at home there. Princeton was great!
Structural heart and valve disease intervention truly blurs the lines between interventional cardiology and cardiac surgery, and the last few years have seen an explosion in new treatment options for patients. As the practice of medicine continues heading towards more minimally invasive treatments, new innovative techniques and technology are being adopted.
Our facilities offer many of the latest treatment options, including:
Echocardiography laboratory – This includes three-dimensional transthoracic and transesophageal imaging capability. In addition to stress echocardiography, it allows detection of very subtle changes in heart structure and function and comprehensive assessment of even the most complex of problems. (Brookwood, Princeton)
Hybrid operating room – This leading technology combines state-of-the-art imaging equipment permanently within a surgical operating room to allow the entire heart team – imaging specialists, structural cardiologists and cardiac surgeons – to perform the most complex, minimally-invasive procedures in a controlled environment. (Brookwood, Princeton)
Biplane, digitally integrated cardiac catherization lab – The lab allows us to approach the most complex structural heart defects with utmost precision. (Brookwood, Princeton)
Minimally invasive techniques means our team can replace your aortic valve or fix your mitral valve through a small hole. For some patients, traditional open-heart surgery isn’t an option. Minimally invasive techniques may allow patients who have traditionally been ineligible for surgery due to age or a health condition a viable treatment option.
Minimally invasive techniques may improve outcomes, and may reduce recovery time. Procedures may include:
The Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) procedure replaces the aortic valve with a bioprosthetic valve (cow valve) through a small tube (catheter) in the patient’s groin, or through a small incision in the chest wall–either of which are performed without opening the chest wall as would traditionally be done in open-heart surgery. Recovery is much faster, with most patients recovering in a few weeks – with an average hospital stay of two to four days.
Our team takes a similar approach to many other conditions, including mitral valve regurgitation (which may benefit from the Mitraclip procedure), or patients who have atrial fibrillation and aren’t good candidates for blood thinners, but may benefit from left atrial appendage closure.
Other conditions treated include atrial and ventricular septal defects, PFO’s, pulmonary embolism, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, pericardial effusions, perivalvular leaks, shunts, fistulas and other congenital heart diseases.