First Pennsylvania Patient Treated in Next Generation Aortic Heart Valve Study

PinnacleHealth CardioVascular Institute offers new treatment option

Nov 10, 2015, 10:30 ET from PinnacleHealth System

HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 10, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- PinnacleHealth CardioVascular Institute enrolled the first patient in Pennsylvania in a randomized trial studying a new heart valve to treat aortic valve disorders. Harrisburg Hospital is the only trial site in Pennsylvania. This study represents the next wave of research with aortic valves that conform to the patient's anatomy.

According to an article published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, aortic stenosis (AS) is the most common valvular heart disease in developed countries with prevalence estimated between 3 and 23 percent.1 AS mainly affects older people, due to scarring and calcium buildup in the valve cusp. With a growing elderly population, AS is anticipated to become a major public health concern.

SALUS is a prospective, multicenter clinical trial of the Direct Flow Medical Transcatheter Aortic Valve System, which will enroll 912 subjects in up to 45 sites in the U.S. Mubashir Mumtaz, MD, FACS, FACC, chief of cardiothoracic surgery, and William Bachinsky, MD, FACC, medical director of vascular services, serve as co-principal investigators locally at PinnacleHealth.

"Our team of cardiologists and cardiovascular surgeons has a long-standing reputation for treating complex heart conditions," said Dr. Mumtaz. "We feel it is our mission to continually assess new, innovative options for our patients."

The purpose of SALUS is to compare the Direct Flow Medical system to the commercially available Medtronic CoreValve in high- and extreme-risk patients with severe symptomatic aortic stenosis. The Direct Flow Medical valve has a double-ring, polymer-based frame, while the Medtronic CoreValve is held by a metal frame. The unique design of the investigational device allows the valve to conform to the patient's anatomy. Unlike other transcatheter aortic valve replacement procedures, the investigational valve does not require rapid pacing of the heart through electrical stimulation.

At PinnacleHealth, there is a team approach to transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) procedures. TAVR procedures, such as those using Direct Flow Medical and CoreValve valves, involve direct care by both a cardiothoracic surgeon and interventional cardiologist in a specially equipped operating room. 

"This landmark study, testing next generation valves, demonstrates how PinnacleHealth CardioVascular Institute pioneers cardiovascular medicine right here in central Pennsylvania," said Dr. Bachinsky.


About PinnacleHealth System

PinnacleHealth is a pioneer not-for-profit healthcare system dedicated to improving the health and quality of life for the people of Central Pennsylvania since 1873. A proven leader in medical innovation, PinnacleHealth offers a wide range of services from primary care to the most complex surgeries and Magnet recognition for nursing excellence. The healthcare network includes four campuses (Community, West Shore, Harrisburg and Polyclinic). The new five-story West Shore Hospital includes 108 beds with an emergency department, medical/surgical care, cardiology, orthopedics, chronic disease management, and private patient rooms. PinnacleHealth is part of RiverHealth ACO, an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP). Medical services, including family practice, imaging, outpatient surgery and oncology are offered at multiple locations throughout the region. For a complete list of services, visit our website at

CONTACT: Kelly McCall, 717-231-8104,

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SOURCE PinnacleHealth System