Centre performing 1,000th transcatheter heart valve procedure

VANCOUVER, June 4, 2014 – On June 5, St. Paul’s Hospital (SPH) will be broadcasting a live transcatheter aortic valve implantation – on an awake patient (not under general anesthesia) – to the Transcatheter Valve Therapies Conference taking place June 5-7, 2014 at The Westin Bayshore. This patient will be the 1,000th transcatheter heart valve (THV) procedure by the Centre for Heart Valve Innovation at SPH.

The Centre for Heart Valve Innovation at St. Paul’s is recognized internationally as a pioneer of innovative, minimally invasive heart valve replacement procedures that provide an alternative for patients who are at higher risk for open-heart surgery,” said Dr. John Webb, Director of Interventional Cardiology at SPH. “By performing this surgery on patients that are awake, we can reduce the stress of surgery and increase options to reduce people’s risk, improve results and avoid complications, and allow patients to return home sooner.”

THV procedures involve inserting a thin tube with a replacement valve into the body through a small incision, then directing it to the heart through an artery. It can be done by making a small hole in the leg or the chest wall. Dr. Webb was the first to successfully perform a transcatheter aortic-valve implantation (TAVI) through an artery in 2005, which involves inserting a new valve from a small puncture in the leg.

Who:     The Centre for Heart Valve Innovation at St. Paul’s Hospital
What:    1,000th transcatheter heart valve procedure / procedure on “awake” patient
When:   Thursday, June 5; surgery between 9:30-10am; interviews with Dr. Webb at 12:30pm
Where: Westin Bayshore, 1601 Bayshore Drive, Grand Ballroom (lobby level)

In addition to TAVI, the Centre for Heart Valve Innovation also performs other transcatheter procedures for people with valve disease, including percutaneous mitral valve repair (“MitraClip”). Dr. Webb is recognized internationally as a leader in these procedures, having the broadest experience in the world and having taught these techniques to healthcare professionals in more than 25 countries.

The Vancouver program is a partnership between St. Paul’s Hospital and Vancouver General Hospital. TAVI is also performed at the Royal Columbian and Royal Jubilee Hospitals.

Providence Health Care (PHC) is one of Canada's largest faith-based health care organizations, operating 16 health care facilities in Greater Vancouver. PHC operates one of two adult academic health science centres in the province – St. Paul’s Hospital – performs cutting-edge research in more than 30 clinical specialties, and focuses its services on six “populations of emphasis”: cardio-pulmonary risks and illnesses, HIV/AIDS, mental health, renal risks and illness, specialized needs in aging and urban health and is home to the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS. www.providencehealthcare.org

For more information:

Dave Lefebvre
Senior Communications Specialist – Media Relations
Providence Health Care
Tel:  604-682-2344 extension 66987
Cell: 604-837-6003 (c)