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Minimally Invasive Mitral Valve Repair

What is minimally invasive mitral valve repair surgery?

traditional incision

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

With more than 3500 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:

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.

robot assisted incision
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 inch 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.

Doctors who treat

Cleveland Clinic has the nation's largest valve treatment program.

Doctors vary in quality due to differences in training and experience; hospitals differ in the number of services available. The more complex your medical problem, the greater these differences in quality become and the more they matter.

Clearly, the doctor and hospital that you choose for complex, specialized medical care will have a direct impact on how well you do. To help you make this choice,  please review our Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute Outcomes

Cleveland Clinic Heart and Vascular Institute Surgeons

The following Mitral Valve Center surgeons specialize in mitral valve surgery:

The Mitral Valve Center surgeons offers expertise and experience to provide the best outcomes possible.

The Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute offers specialty centers and clinics for patients whose treatment requires the expertise of a group of doctors and surgeons who focus on valve disease:

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, chat online with a nurse or call the Miller Family Heart and Vascular Institute Resource & Information Nurse at 216.445.9288 or toll-free at 866.289.6911. We would be happy to help you.

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Reviewed: 10/16

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

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