Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) occurs when plaque (made of fat, cholesterol, calcium and other substances) builds up in the arteries. Over time this narrows the arteries, limiting the flow of oxygen-rich blood to your organs and other parts of your body like legs, feet and arms.
Major risk factors for PAD are smoking, age and having certain diseases and conditions, including heart disease. It’s twice as common in African Americans as in Caucasians.
Located across western Virginia, Carilion Clinic is proud to offer a new treatment for patients with severe heart failure, a Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD), called the HeartMate II by Thoratec.
What is LVAD?
LVAD stands for Left Ventricular Assist Device, a mechanical device that circulates blood throughout the body when the heart is too weak to pump blood on its own. It is sometimes called a “heart pump” or “VAD.” The device can help improve overall organ function, allowing patients to breathe more easily and feel less tired.
At the Carilion Clinic Heart Failure Clinic we provide compassionate, comprehensive outpatient treatment for people with heart failure. With three convenient locations in Roanoke, New River Valley and Lexington, Virginia, we’re here to help you to maximize the quality of your life and stay as healthy as possible. We provide a supportive atmosphere for you and your family to learn about your condition with the goal of helping you to avoid a visit to the emergency department or hospital admission.
The Carilion Clinic Surgical Valve Program specializes in the surgical treatment of heart valve disease. Our highly experienced cardiac surgeons excel at using both traditional open and innovative minimally invasive surgical techniques for the repair and replacement of diseased or defective aortic and mitral valves.
We offer a full range of surgical approaches including:
A normally functioning mitral valve serves is like a door that allows blood to flow from the heart’s left atrium into the left ventricle. Mitral regurgitation is the diagnosis made when this valve leaks as the heart is trying to send blood out to the body, resulting in the backward flow of blood into the top chamber (left atrium) and lungs.
A properly functioning aortic valve is like the door that allows blood to flow from the heart’s left ventricle into the aorta and from there on to the brain and other organs. Aortic regurgitation occurs when some of the blood leaks back into the heart instead of traveling throughout the body. This backward flow of blood into the left ventricle slowly causes damage, stretching it out. There are many reasons for the aortic valve to become leaky, including a dilated aorta (aneurysm), age related degeneration, or complications of rheumatic fever.
Aortic stenosis (hardening of the aortic valves) can be a problem that develops as the result of a birth defect or, more commonly, that occurs with age. It is harmful to your health in several ways. The heart has to work harder which can cause it to weaken.