New heart valve implanted to patient
A Shanghai-produced aortic heart valve has been implanted in a 70-year-old patient at a local hospital for the first time since its approval.
The VitaFlow valve developed by MicroPort based in Zhangjiang High-Tech Park in the Pudong New Area was successfully implanted into the heart of the male patient on Wednesday at Zhongshan Hospital. He suffered severe aortic valve stenosis along with valve thickening and calcification.
Dr Ge Junbo, chief physician of the hospital’s cardiac division, conducted the operation, which took about an hour.
“The valve features an innovative double-layer rim to reduce perivalvular leakage, a major postoperative concern,” said Ge.
Aortic valve stenosis is one of the commonest and severest valve diseases in the elderly. In Western countries, about 2 percent of those above 65 years suffer the condition, while the rate doubles in those over 85 years old. Without treatment, patients rarely survive more than three years.
Compared with traditional heart valve replacement surgery, transcatheter aortic valve replacement only requires a 6-millimeter incision on the patients’ leg, so it can be used on patients who are too sick or too old for conventional operations. Patients can be discharged within three days of surgery.
China has over 2.8 million aortic valve stenosis patients, but only 2,000 TAVP surgeries have been conducted.
The company started research on the valve in 2010. The first product was implanted into a 78-year-old patient in a clinical trial in 2004. The patient is still alive. The VitaFlow valve was approved by the National Medical Products Administration on July 10.
The price of the valve is expected to be 30 percent less than existing products, said Luo Qiyi, chief technology officer of MicroPort.
Hong Kong-listed MicroPort Scientific Corporation was established in Shanghai in 1998. It has become a leading medical device company, releasing the world's first targeted-drug-delivery heart stent and China’s first pacemaker made to international standards.