Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement Improves Health Status in Elderly Veterans

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Background: United States veterans have substantially worse baseline health status than the general population, which may limit the health benefits of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR). The aim of this study is to quantify the health benefits of TAVR in veterans undergoing the procedure within the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health-care system. Methods: We prospectively evaluated heath status in 131 elderly veterans undergoing TAVR in the VA healthcare system between 2015 and 2017. Health status was assessed at baseline and 30 days post procedure using the Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire 12 (KCCQ-12). Totals and domain-specific (physical limitation, symptoms, quality of life, and social limitation) health statuses were measured and analyzed with a paired t-test. We also conducted stratified analysis by baseline New York Heart Association functional class and N-terminal pro-b type natriuretic peptide levels. Results: Mean patient age was 77 ± 8 years and average Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) score was 4.4 (interquartile range, 3-7). Transfemoral access and balloon-expandable valves were used in 118 cases (92%) and 108 cases (83%), respectively. At baseline, overall health status was poor (overall score, 43 ± 19). After TAVR, significant improvements in overall health status (30 ± 18) and domain-specific health status were seen (improvements in physical limitation, 12 ± 20; symptoms, 23 ± 23; quality of life, 20 ± 17; social limitation, 22 ± 21; all P<.001). The majority of patients (88%) had moderate to large improvements in health status. A favorable outcome (alive with KCCQ-12 overall score >60 at 30 days) was seen in 78% of patients. Conclusion: Among elderly veterans with severe aortic stenosis, TAVR is associated with significant improvements in short-term health status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-211
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Invasive Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2018

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  • quality of life
  • transcatheter aortic valve replacement
  • veterans


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