Aortic Heart Surgery options have certainly changed today and there is the option to have the full on open heart procedure, or some of the catheter type procedures available today. This is an option for most patients; however with the procedure done with the full on procedure, you are cured and done, but when done with a less invasive method via a catheter, you have a trade off in the fact that return visits will be required to ensure the catheter is still properly in place, functioning, etc. I learned that a while back with my interview with Dr. Muhs of Yale University a few months ago.
The related reading below has some links that describe some of the newer less invasive techniques that are options. Many times a patient who may not survive a full on surgery procedure can be helped with less invasive procedures. BD
Despite a personal history of alcoholism, a family history of heart failure and being forced to cancel a comedic tour due to a heart-related problem, 57-year-old Robin Williams will likely emerge safely from his upcoming heart surgery, heart doctors agree.
In a statement issued Thursday, Williams' publicist, Diane Rosen, said that the renowned comedian and actor needs an aortic valve replacement -- the same type of surgery that former first lady Barbara Bush underwent on Wednesday. Bush is reportedly recovering well from her operation.
But though details remain scarce, heart doctors said aortic valve replacement today is a fairly routine procedure and that Williams will likely emerge unscathed.
"The prognosis is actually quite good, assuming that the procedure is limited to the aortic valve they are replacing," said Dr. Timothy Gardner, president of the American Heart Association and medical director of the Center for Heart and Vascular Health for the Christiana Care Health System.
"There is no connection between alcoholism or alcohol abuse and aortic valve problems," he said. "It is also very unlikely that his past alcohol abuse has affected his heart because we see him having been fully functional and fine before this."