Breathing Easier Thanks to TAVR

Karen McNew McGuire's picture
By Karen McNew McGuire on August 30, 2018

“They have always treated me right at Carilion,” said Bobby Bowling.
 
Bobby and his wife Brenda live in Thaxton and came to Carilion when Bobby started having trouble breathing.
 
“When Mr. Bowling came to us his main complaint or symptom was shortness of breath with activity, but even shortness of breath at rest when he wasn’t doing anything physical,” explained Rahul Sharma, M.D., an interventional cardiologist at Carilion Clinic.
 
“I got to where I couldn’t breathe good - couldn’t walk very far - weak," said Bobby. "And I am too young to be as weak as I was.”
 
An ultrasound showed his aortic valve, where blood exits the heart, wasn’t working properly.
 
“Imagine a door with rusted hinges and the door is not going to open properly - traffic can’t get through,” said Dr. Sharma.
 
Due to risks related to open heart surgery, the most advanced option in the region, TAVR or trans catheter aortic valve replacement, was recommended.
 
“We were very lucky that he chose us to work with him and to help him,” added Dr. Sharma.  
 
And the feeling is mutual.
 
“I can even talk for more than a couple of minutes at a time in fact I called one of my buddies I worked with for years and we talked for two hours on the telephone the other night,” said Bobby.
 
Transcatheter aortic valve replacement - advanced care close to home.