Washington Regional Performs State’s First Procedure Using EvolutTM FX+ TAVR System

Jun 19, 2024 at 04:07 pm by PEPPERARK

Fayetteville — The team of cardiovascular specialists from Washington Regional’s Walker Heart Institute recently treated the first patient using the EvolutTM FX+ transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) system. The system offers a minimally invasive alternative to open-heart surgical aortic valve replacement for patients with severe aortic stenosis.

Washington Regional first began performing TAVR procedures in 2018 and is the first hospital in Arkansas to provide this new approach to the TAVR procedure.
Aortic stenosis occurs when the leaflets, or flaps, of the aortic valve become stiff and have difficulty opening and closing, making the heart work harder to pump blood to the rest of the body.

Symptoms include fatigue or weakness, dizziness, shortness of breath, chest pain or pressure, heart palpitations, fainting and cough. The condition can limit a person’s ability to participate in daily activities. If left untreated, 50% of patients with severe aortic stenosis can die from heart failure in as little as two years.

During the TAVR procedure, a replacement heart valve is implanted by maneuvering a thin, flexible tube, or catheter, with the replacement valve through a blood vessel. The physician views images of the patient’s heart to guide the catheter to the diseased valve, where the replacement valve is then deployed. The new valve starts working immediately to help blood flow more efficiently through the heart.

"It is encouraging to see how the Evolut FX TAVR platform has evolved considerably over time and brought our heart teams another treatment option," said Dr. Zubair Ahmed, an interventional cardiologist with Washington Regional Cardiovascular Clinic, part of the Walker Heart Institute. “This newest iteration of the Evolut TAVR system offers a modified diamond-shaped frame design that provides more space for catheter maneuverability and allows physicians to better access patients’ coronary arteries, which is especially beneficial for younger patients who may need additional procedures in the future.”

“Washington Regional’s Walker Heart Institute is the region’s leader in TAVR procedures,” said Washington Regional Chief Operating Officer Birch Wright. “Offering our patients this newest iteration of an established and trusted platform is one more way we are fulfilling Washington Regional’s mission of improving the health of people in the communities we serve.”

If you or someone you know have symptoms of severe aortic stenosis, talk to your doctor to see if TAVR is a possible treatment option.

Washington Regional Medical System is the only community-owned, locally governed, non-profit health care system located in Northwest Arkansas. Washington Regional employs over 3,400 team members and serves the region with a 425-bed medical center, over 45 clinic locations and five Centers of Excellence - the Washington Regional J.B. Hunt Transport Services Neuroscience Institute; Washington Regional Walker Heart Institute; Washington Regional Women and Infants Center; Washington Regional Total Joint Center; and Washington Regional Pat Walker Center for Seniors. Washington Regional is the
region’s only Level II trauma center, the first hospital in Northwest Arkansas and one of only three in the state to earn certification as a Comprehensive Stroke Center by The Joint Commission, and the only hospital in Northwest Arkansas to earn Advanced

Certification for Spine Surgery from The Joint Commission. U.S. News & World Report ranked Washington Regional Medical Center as the #1 hospital in Arkansas in 2023-24, recognizing Washington Regional as high performing in 12 areas of care –
abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, heart attack, heart failure, hip fracture, hip replacement, kidney failure, knee replacement, lung cancer surgery, pneumonia and stroke. Additionally, Washington Regional is the only hospital in the state to achieve a high performing designation for maternity care (uncomplicated pregnancy) for 2024 from U.S. News & World Report. Washington Regional is committed to improving the health of people in the communities it serves
through compassionate, high-quality care, prevention, and wellness education. Visit wregional.com for more information, or follow Washington Regional on Facebook, Instagram, X (Twitter), or LinkedIn.

Sections: Clinical