Advanced Mitral Valve Repair - Norma's Story

Getting married in your 80's might seem crazy, but Norma and Tom had reason to celebrate. When her mitral valve became severely damaged, daily life was difficult. Until Penn offered Norma a minimally invasive procedure that changed everything.

Program Overview

Your heart has four valves: the tricuspid, pulmonary, mitral and aortic valve. Each valve has flaps that open and close, keeping blood flowing through your heart, lungs and body. However, sometimes the valves do not work as intended, and the valve cannot open fully, or it cannot fully close, allowing blood to leak backward rather than flowing onward. When this happens, the heart cannot work as efficiently. If left untreated valve disease can cause serious complications, such as heart failure, stroke, blood clots or even cardiac arrest.

However, treatment is available. As the largest heart valve program in the Philadelphia region, we perform more valve surgeries than any other hospital in Pennsylvania. If you’re struggling with advanced valve disease you deserve to have the best treatment and options available. Our program leads the way in new options for heart valve replacement and repair, including minimally invasive and robotic valve procedures that were developed or perfected here at Penn, as well as open surgical options.

Types of Valve Disease

Repair and replacement for mitral valve disease: We offer the newest, minimally invasive approaches to mitral valve repair and replacement, including robotic procedures and MitraClip - a device approved to treat those who suffer from mitral regurgitation but can’t undergo open-heart surgery. The conditions we treat include:

Repair and replacement for aortic valve disease: In addition to traditional open-heart procedures, we were the first in the Philadelphia region to offer Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR), a non-surgical treatment for aortic stenosis. We continue to be the most experienced TAVR provider in Philadelphia. To date, Penn has performed over 2,000 TAVRs, more than any center in the region. The conditions we treat include:

We also treat conditions related to the tricuspid and the pulmonary valves:

Why Our Program is Different

Our cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons work together to create a unique treatment plan that is tailored to you. Whenever possible we repair the existing valve, and when valve replacement is necessary we carefully consider all options to select the type of heart valve and procedure that is best for you.

We are proud to perform a high volume of procedures each year, leading to the best possible outcomes for patients. Through the Penn Valve Center, we are able to partner with the cardiologists and surgeons that refer patients to us, allowing open communication and collaboration from diagnosis to treatment, follow-up and beyond. Your care team with be able to focus on what is most important: getting you back to the things you love.

In This Section

Center for Bicuspid Aortic Valve Diseases

The Center for Bicuspid Aortic Valve Diseases offers innovative treatments and techniques as well as a personalized care plan for patients with bicuspid aortic valve disease.

Treatments and Procedures

With a full array of medical, interventional and surgical options, discover the latest treatments and procedures available at the Penn Heart Valve Disease Program.

Treatment Team

Heart surgeons and cardiologists at Penn Medicine are leaders in the Philadelphia region for the treatment of heart valve disease.

Clinical Trials

Penn is an international leader in the development of new therapies for heart valve disease. View our current clinical trials and research.

Patient Stories

With thousands of heart valve patients treated at Penn, these select few were asked to share their experience.

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