Journal Article

Minimally invasive transapical beating heart aortic valve implantation — proof of concept

Thomas Walther, Volkmar Falk, Michael A. Borger, Todd Dewey, Gerhard Wimmer-Greinecker, Gerhard Schuler, Michael Mack and Friedrich W. Mohr

in European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery

Published on behalf of European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery

Volume 31, issue 1, pages 9-15
Published in print January 2007 | ISSN: 1010-7940
Published online January 2007 | e-ISSN: 1873-734X | DOI:
Minimally invasive transapical beating heart aortic valve implantation — proof of concept

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  • Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Cardiothoracic Surgery


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Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of minimally invasive transapical beating heart aortic valve implantation (TAP-AVI) for high-risk patients with aortic stenosis. Methods: TAP-AVI was performed via a small anterolateral minithoracotomy with or without femoral extracorporeal circulation (ECC) on the beating heart. A pericardial xenograft fixed within a stainless steel, balloon expandable stent (Cribier-Edwards, Edwards Lifesciences, Irvine, CA, USA) was used. Thirty consecutive patients (82 ± 5.1 years, 21 (70%) female) were operated from 02/06 until 09/06 at one center using fluoroscopic and echocardiographic visualization. Average EuroSCORE predicted risk for mortality was 27 ± 12%. Results: Valve positioning was successful in 29 patients and one required early conversion to full sternotomy. Implantation (8 mm × 23 mm and 22 mm × 26 mm valves) was performed on the beating heart during brief periods of rapid ventricular pacing. ECC was applied in 13 patients. Neither coronary artery obstruction nor migration of the prosthesis was observed and all valves displayed good hemodynamic function. Echocardiography revealed minor paravalvular leakage in 14 patients (trace in three, mild in nine and moderate in two). Three patients (10%) died, one on postoperative day (POD) three secondary to preoperative global myocardial failure and two on POD 18 and 86 due to abdominal complications. Conclusions: Minimally invasive beating heart TAP-AVI is feasible. Initial results are encouraging in view of the high-risk profile of the patients. Long-term studies as well as randomized protocols are required.

Keywords: Aortic valve replacement; Transapical aortic valve implantation; Minimally invasive cardiac surgery; Beating heart cardiac surgery; Transcatheter valve implantation

Journal Article.  3817 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Cardiovascular Medicine ; Cardiothoracic Surgery

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