Heart Valve Implantation Without Surgery
Whereas open-heart surgery in patients with aortic stenosis is currently still the elective procedure of choice, a high percentage of patients with aortic stenosis may be considered too high risk for this conventional surgery. For those patients, a new and innovative catheter-based procedure called Structural Heart Intervention may provide a healthy alternative to open-heart surgery.
Dr. Robert Cubeddu, the Medical Director of the new Structural and Adult Congenital Heart Intervention Program at Aventura Hospital and Medical Center, is able to repair certain heart valves minimally invasively using catheters, also known as percutaneous or transcatheter valve implants or repair. These artificial valves are purified and attached to a metallic frame, similar to that of a stent. The device is compressed over the surface of a balloon catheter. By creating a small incision at the level of the groin, he can advance these catheters through the femoral artery or femoral vein to the heart.
Once in place, the balloon is inflated at high pressure to expand and deliver the new artificial valve, which has now substituted the damaged valve. The balloon and catheter is then removed. In other words, the artificial valve, once delivered inside the native one, assumes its function and replaces it without having to remove it.
Dr. Cubeddu explains that the fundamental basis of Structural and Adult Congenital Heart Intervention arises from the successful experience gained over the last 30 years with heart catheterizations, balloon angioplasty and stents that are used to open the obstructed coronary arteries. He explains that the very first human percutaneous valve implant was performed in Europe in the year 2000, and since then, it is estimated that more than 8,000 patients world-wide have benefited from this new technology.
Candidates for this new technology may include:
- Patients with valvular heart disease that are either inoperable or simply high-risk for conventional surgery, and
- Patients with congenital heart defects and cardiac stroke related problems.
Some examples of congenital heart defects that can be treated through the Structural and Adult Congenital Heart Intervention Program include:
- Patent Foramen Ovalepatent
- Patent Ductus Arteriosum
- Atrial Septal Defect
- Ventricular Septal Defect
- Arterio-Venous Malformations
- Left Atrial Appendage
Roberto J. Cubeddu, MD, Medical Director
Aventura Hospital & Medical Center Welcomes Roberto Cubeddu, MD Specializing in Structural Heart Disease
Dr. Roberto J. Cubeddu obtained his Medical Doctor degree from the Central University of Venezuela, School of Medicine, in 1998. He then graduated from his Internship and Medical Residency training at Mount Sinai Medical Center of Florida, in 2003, and he was elected Chief Resident in 2004. Dr. Cubeddu was invited to join the Cardiology Fellowship training program also at Mount Sinai Medical Center of Florida, from which he graduated in June, 2007.
In July 2007, Dr. Cubeddu moved to Boston, MA to join the Interventional Cardiology, and Structural and Adult Congenital Heart Disease training program at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard School of Medicine from which he graduated in May 2009.
Dr. Cubeddu has a field interest in structural heart disease and adult congenital interventions.
Dr. Cubeddu is part of the talented team at Aventura Hospital and Medical Center, consisting of interventional cardiologists and staff experts specializing in invasive cardiology who are on-call 24 hours a day.
Aventura Hospital’s state-of-the-art cardiac catheterization laboratories are equipped with the most advanced technology, including all-digital cardiovascular imaging systems. The improved viewing helps our cardiologists to treat coronary artery blockages that could cause heart attacks or other serious cardiovascular damage.
- ECFMG Certification
- Board Certified in Internal Medicine
- Board Certified in Adult Echocardiography
- Board Certified in Nuclear Medicine
- BLS and ACLS Certified
- Board Certified in Cardiovascular Medicine
- Board Eligible in Interventional Cardiology
- Medicine Associate Member, American College of Physician
- Member in training, American College of Cardiology
- Member in training, Society of Cardiovascular
For information on Dr. Cubeddu and the Florida Heart and Vascular program, visit Florida Heart and Vascular Care’s website.