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Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI)

TAVI is a minimally invasive alternative to open surgery for treating aortic stenosis (a narrowing of the aortic valve)

About

Your consultant may recommend transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) if they feel that conventional open heart surgery isn't the right approach for you. The procedure involves inserting an artificial valve into your heart through a small (1cm) incision at the top of your leg. Successful treatment will improve your heart's ability to pump blood throughout your body. 

Need to know

  • What happens icon plus

    TAVI is usually performed under light sedation with local anaesthetic, meaning you'll be slightly drowsy and pain-free throughout the procedure. Your consultant will insert a thin, flexible tube (a delivery catheter) through a small cut in the skin, usually in your groin but sometimes between your ribs or under your collarbone. The catheter is then passed towards the heart and through the opening of the narrowed aortic valve. A small balloon may be inflated to open your aortic valve and make room for the artificial valve. Most artificial valves are made using bovine (cow) tissue. This new valve is expanded to fit in place of the old, narrowed valve. The whole procedure takes one to two hours.
  • How to prepare icon plus

    Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you and let you know how to prepare. If you're having general anaesthetic, your consultant will tell you how long you should avoid eating and drinking for.
  • Afterwards icon plus

    The recovery time for TAVI is generally much faster than for traditional open heart surgery. You'll be cared for in hospital for as long as your recovery requires, but most patients go home within two days following the procedure. You can expect some discomfort and will be given pain relief medication. It may take up to four weeks to fully recover, but your consultant will let you know when you can get back to your usual routine, including work.
Consultant in theatres

Our consultants

We're proud to work with leading experts across a range of medical fields, whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion. 

Our facilities

From complex surgery to straightforward procedures, we provide exceptional care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

  • London Bridge Hospital Facility

    London Bridge Hospital

    27 Tooley Street

    London

    SE1 2PR

    Appointments and Enquiries 020 7234 2009
    Imaging Appointments 020 7234 2773
    Switchboard 020 7407 3100

  • facility-HSC-flag-hero-582x582

    The Harley Street Clinic

    35 Weymouth Street

    London

    W1G 8BJ

    Appointments 020 7034 8181
    Enquiries 020 3131 7962

  • Wellington-south-hero-facility-582-582

    The Wellington Hospital

    Wellington Place

    London NW8 9LE

    Appointments 0207 483 5148
    Enquiries 020 3131 7478

Request an appointment

We're happy to help you make an appointment with one of our experienced consultants.

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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