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Expert Rev Med Devices. 2012 Nov;9(6):577-94. doi: 10.1586/erd.12.51.

Polymeric trileaflet prosthetic heart valves: evolution and path to clinical reality.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY, USA.


Present prosthetic heart valves, while hemodynamically effective, remain limited by progressive structural deterioration of tissue valves or the burden of chronic anticoagulation for mechanical valves. An idealized valve prosthesis would eliminate these limitations. Polymeric heart valves (PHVs), fabricated from advanced polymeric materials, offer the potential of durability and hemocompatibility. Unfortunately, the clinical realization of PHVs to date has been hampered by findings of in vivo calcification, degradation and thrombosis. Here, the authors review the evolution of PHVs, evaluate the state of the art of this technology and propose a pathway towards clinical reality. In particular, the authors discuss the development of a novel aortic PHV that may be deployed via transcatheter implantation, as well as its optimization via device thrombogenicity emulation.

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