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St. Luke’s First to Offer Non-invasive Cure for Leaky Mitral Valves
October 01, 2015

Bethlehem, Pa (8/7/2015) — Arthur Decheser said the “doctors were dancing” last week after they successfully used a new device to stop his mitral valve from leaking.

Surgeons at St. Luke’s University Health Network placed a MitraClip, the breakthrough device made by Chicago-based Abbott Labs, in Decheser’s chest after he learned he was not a candidate for the traditional invasive surgery that is still the standard of care to treat severe symptomatic degenerative mitral regurgitation. The condition affects more than 4 million Americans.

The elated surgical team, the first in the region and among the first in the U.S. to perform a percutaneous Mitral Valve Repair using the new technology, included St. Luke’s Chief of Cardiovascular Surgery Dr. Steve Olenchock and Chief of Cardiology Dr. Ray Durkin.

“We now have a great option for the treatment of leaky mitral valves in patients who may be considered too high risk for open heart surgery, or who have been turned down for treatment in the past,” Olenchock said.
MitraClip is non-surgically delivered through a patient’s leg. It requires a short recovery time and a hospital stay of fewer than three days.

Decheser went home the day after his surgery. His symptoms have been relieved, and he says he feels much better. He has also agreed to speak with the press. Use the contact information below for more information.

Media Contact:
Mariella B. Miller
Senior Director, Corporate Communications
St. Luke’s University Health Network

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