NEWS

CLOT RISK IS SEEN IN SOME HEART VALVES

heart valve

The Food and Drug Administration and leading cardiologists are warning that aortic heart valves from animal tissue—implanted surgically in thousands of patients world-wide—can develop tiny blood clots, causing the valves to function improperly.

These valves from pig and cow tissue have been used for three decades in patients with malfunctioning valves.

Leading cardiologists wrote that valve leaflets didn’t move properly in 22 of 55 patients in a clinical trial of one such tissue device from St. Jude Medical Inc. When valve leaves don’t move properly, this can lead to stenosis, or a narrowing of the opening for blood to flow through.

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