Interventional cardiologists at Baptist Memphis recently performed the first MitraClip G4 in the Memphis and surrounding areas. Baptist Memphis is only the second facility in Tennessee to perform the procedure.
The MitraClip G4 – developed by Abbott – treats mitral regurgitation, in which the mitral valve doesn’t close and blood flows backward into the heart. Previous versions of the MitraClip required multiple clips to close off the leak, which can lead to stenosis. The MitraClip G4 has one wider clip that can cover up the valve with less metal and cinching of the valve, allowing the body to pump blood more efficiently.
The recovery time with the MitraClip G4 is quicker for patients as well; typically, they only need to stay in the hospital for 24 hours for observation. After they are discharged, they can return to daily activities in about a week.
“Our results have been great,” said Dr. Basil Paulus, interventional cardiologist with Stern Cardiovascular. “With a shorter hospital stay and quicker recovery time, patients have been very pleased with the new technology.”
Patients who have more damage in a bigger area can really benefit from the MitraClip G4, giving doctors a better tool to treat sicker patients.
Dr. Paulus, along with Dr. H. Edward Garrett Jr., cardiothoracic surgeon with Baptist Memphis, and Dr. Jay Gardner, interventional cardiologist with Stern, are all trained on the technology.
Dr. Paulus estimates that they will perform 60 procedures a year with the MitraClip G4, but that more patients could benefit from the technology if their doctors knew about it.
The technology can be used in emergencies but hasn’t been used as such yet at Baptist Memphis. It could also possibly be used in tricuspid cases with patients who are not good candidates for open-heart surgery, though the Food and Drug Administration has not approved it yet for that purpose.