The American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) will conduct a clinical trial exploring the safety and efficacy of expanded uses of transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) in certain types of patients with severe aortic stenosis. The trial is believed to be the first for any medical specialty societies.
Aortic stenosis is a long-developing condition that, once symptoms emerge, is highly lethal. Roughly half of all untreated patients die in the first 2 years after symptoms appear. Surgical replacement of the valve reduces symptoms and improves survival, but at least 30% of patients with severe symptoms do not undergo surgery because of advanced age (most patients who develop symptoms are older than 80 years), left ventricular dysfunction, or comorbid conditions.
Mitka M. Two Specialty Societies to Run Their Own Clinical Trial of Heart Valve Replacement. JAMA. 2013;309(15):1575-1576. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.2789