Appointments

866.320.4573

Request an Appointment

Questions

800.223.2273

Contact us with Questions

Expand Content

Minimally Invasive Mitral Valve Repair

Written with A. Marc Gillinov, M.D. and Tomislav Mihaljevic, M.D.

What is minimally invasive mitral valve repair surgery?

With more than 3000 minimally invasive procedures completed, Cleveland Clinic has the nation's largest experience with minimally invasive mitral valve repair surgery. Employing state-of-the-art techniques, today minimally invasive valve surgeries account for 87 percent of the minimally invasive cardiac surgeries performed at Cleveland Clinic.

Minimally invasive mitral valve repair surgery is performed through a small incision, often using specialized surgical instruments. The incision is 2- to 4-inches instead of the 6- to 8-inch incision required for traditional surgery. Robotically assisted keyhole approaches or port-access techniques are also available for some types of surgery.

Cleveland Clinic offers full range of minimally invasive mitral valve surgery approaches

Cleveland Clinic heart surgeons have expertise with the full range of minimally invasive approaches for mitral valve repair, enabling us to offer individualized treatment for each patient. These minimally invasive valve procedures, which range from a 2- to 4-inch incision to fully endoscopic surgery, include:

traditional incision

Traditional heart surgery incision The incision is larger (about 6 - 8 inches), made down the sternum, through bone and muscle

Benefits of minimally invasive mitral valve surgery

The benefits of minimally invasive mitral valve surgery may include:

  • Reduced pain
  • Reduced blood loss
  • Reduced risk of infection
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • Faster recovery
  • Faster return to work
  • Less scarring, improved appearance after surgery
mini thoracotamy

Right Mini-Thoracotomy

The right mini-thoracotomy is performed with a 2- to 3-inch skin incision created in a skin fold on the right chest, providing an excellent cosmetic result.

The heart is approached between the ribs, providing the surgeon access to the mitral valve. There is no sternal incision or spreading of the ribs required for this surgical technique.The surgeon inserts special surgical instruments through the incision to perform the valve repair. Results with this approach are excellent

partial sternotomy

Partial Upper Sternotomy

A partial upper sternotomy includes a 2- to 3-inch skin incision and division of the upper portion of the sternum, providing the surgeon access to the mitral valve to perform the repair. In contrast, a traditional sternotomy requires an 8- to 10 -inch incision down the entire sternum.

The partial upper sternotomy offers the surgeon an excellent view of the mitral valve and may be an appropriate approach for patients who require combined mitral valve and aortic valve procedures.

robotic assisted heart surgeon

Robotically-Assisted Mitral Valve Repair

Robotically assisted mitral valve surgery is a type of minimally invasive surgery in which the surgeon uses a specially-designed computer console to control surgical instruments on thin robotic arms. The robotic arms are introduced through a 1- to 2-cm incision in the right side of the chest. The surgeon's hands control the movement and placement of the endoscopic instruments to open the pericardium (thin sac that surrounds the heart) and to perform the procedure.

Robotically assisted mitral valve surgery provides the surgeon with an undistorted, three-dimensional view of the mitral valve, leaflets and subvalvular structures with the use of special camera. This approach enables surgeons to perform complex repairs without the need for division of the breast bone (sternum) or spreading of the ribs, in most cases.

robot assisted incision

Robotically Assisted Incision

Learn more

If you would like to find out if you are a candidate for minimally invasive mitral valve surgery or learn more about minimally invasive heart surgery, contact us or call the Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute Resource & Information Nurse at 216.445.9288 or toll-free at 866.289.6911. We would be happy to help you.

Reviewed: 11/12

Talk to a Nurse: Mon. - Fri., 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. (ET)

Call a Heart & Vascular Nurse locally 216.445.9288 or toll-free 866.289.6911.

Schedule an Appointment

Toll-free 800.659.7822

This information is provided by Cleveland Clinic and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

© Copyright 2014 Cleveland Clinic. All rights reserved.

HealthHub from Cleveland Clinic

Read the Latest from Our Experts About cctopics » Heart & Vascular Health
After Heart Surgery, This Ordinary Drug Could Be Right for Your Chest Pain
11/26/14 8:00 a.m.
You might expect to have some pain in your chest after heart surgery. But if you have chest pain and several other symptoms, there’s a common problem that may be to blame. ...
by Joseph F. Sabik III, MD
Low-Carb Eating May Be Best for Weight Loss, Heart Health
11/25/14 6:00 a.m.
If you’re looking for a heart-healthy weight-loss diet to try, it appears that low-carbohydrate might be more e...
Thanksgiving Dinner: Serve This, Not That (Infographic)
11/24/14 10:05 a.m.
Thanksgiving dinner is the ultimate family feast. Overeating turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, glaze...
High Blood Pressure? Don’t Take Vitamin D for It (Video)
11/20/14 8:31 a.m.
Sellers of vitamin D claim the nutrient can lower your blood pressure. But don’t believe the hype. Despite clai...
When Your Heart Stents Narrow, Brachytherapy Can Help
11/19/14 8:22 a.m.
Cardiac stents are an effective, nonsurgical way of holding a narrowed or blocked artery open to increase blood...