Medical Miracle: Cow's valve placed inside woman's heart to save cancer patient

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Chennai, July 16: It can be called a medical miracle and this miracle happened in a hospital in Chennai. Doctors conducted a unique surgery and saved a 81-year-old woman placing a cow's valve inside her heart.

The woman, a cancer patient, has been suffering from heart ailment since last 10-15 years. This was not the first time when she went under a heart surgery.

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Earlier in 2004, she underwent a surgery following which doctors implanted a valve inside her leaking heart-valve. As she was a cancer patient, it was difficult for doctors to do an open heart surgery.

However, the doctors did not lose hope and used another method and saved the woman. A catheter was inserted into the groin of the patient and placed the new bioprosthetic heart valve inside the old heart-valve.

Despite radiation and chemotherapy, the cancer patient survived the pain of the unique surgery and recovered from heart ailment soon.

However, 11 years later, the patient once again faced breathing problem and was admitted to Frontier Lifeline Hospital. After checking scan reports of the patient, doctors informed her family that previously placed bioprosthetic aortic valve was narrowed and reduced heart-muscle functioning.

Hence, the doctors decided to use a procedure called ‘transcatheter aortic valve replacement'. The doctor, who conducted the operation, was quoted as saying, "...we hit on a procedure called ‘transcatheter aortic valve replacement', where a small incision was made in her groin and through a blood vessel, the substitute valve made from cow's heart-tissue along with a stent was taken to the leaking valve and fixed inside (the old valve)."

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