How long does AVR surgery take? This question is a crucial one because there are two main approaches to the procedure. Surgical AVR requires more time than transcatheter AVR. In addition, the latter tends to produce faster recovery and decreased postoperative hospital stay. Although both approaches have their benefits, surgical AVR still retains a higher rate of prolonged hospital stay. But if you want to save your time and money, consider a transcatheter AVR.
Patients with AVR should be aware that surgery can take up to six months. Recovery time from the surgery depends on several factors. In most cases, you will be under general anesthesia. A chest incision is needed to access the heart during surgery. It depends on how the surgeon approaches the aortic valve. After the surgery, you may need to stay in the hospital for several weeks for complete recovery. It is also important to note that it may take up to six months to recover fully.
Depending on the type of procedure, AVR surgery may be performed with or without coronary artery bypass. In general, the open-heart procedure is the most common type of AVR surgery. The procedure typically takes between two and four hours. Some patients qualify for a minimally invasive approach, which involves a smaller incision in the chest. The other option involves a transcatheter aortic valve replacement, which involves passing a thin tube through the leg up to the heart.
Traditional open-heart surgery requires a heart-lung bypass machine to allow access to the heart. The heart is stopped during open-heart surgery, while the bypass machine continues pumping blood for the body. In this technique, a six to eight-inch incision is made in the chest. The chest wall and surrounding tissues are separated to access the heart. The recovery time for traditional open-heart surgery is much longer than that of the mini AVR.
Typically, a patient will be in the hospital for three to five days. The surgical incision will be covered with bandages. The bandages will be removed in a few days. Most patients will be able to sit comfortably and drive within three to eight weeks. The surgeon will provide specific guidelines. There are several other risks associated with the procedure, such as an early pacemaker implantation or an older age. These risks should be discussed before surgery.
After the procedure, a patient will experience pain and fatigue, but after a few days, these symptoms should subside. A bioprosthetic valve is usually effective for about 15 years, and patients should experience improved health within a year of surgery. Moreover, bioprosthetic valves are more durable and can last for 20 years or more. Ultimately, patients must decide which procedure is best for them based on their personal situation and medical history.