Information for the public

This procedure can only be done as part of a research study. This is because there is not enough evidence to be sure how well it works and how safe it is.

Aortic stenosis is narrowing of the valve between the main pumping chamber of the heart and the main artery supplying blood to the body (the aorta). It reduces the amount of blood flowing out of the heart and around the body. Aortic stenosis may be present in a baby before it is born. This procedure involves inserting a thin tube through the mother’s abdomen into the womb, then through the baby’s chest wall and into its heart. A balloon attached to the catheter is inflated, which helps to widen the valve. The balloon is then deflated and removed. The aim is to help the heart develop properly.

NHS Choices may be a good place to find out more. NICE’s information on interventional procedures guidance has more about what a procedure is and how we assess them.

Is this procedure right for me?

If you’ve been offered this procedure, your healthcare professionals should discuss with you what is involved, and explain the research study, and tell you about the risks and benefits. They should talk with you about your options, and listen carefully to your views and concerns. Your family can be involved too, if you wish. All of this should happen before you agree (consent) to have the procedure and to be in the study. You should also be told how to find more information about the procedure. Read more about making decisions about your care.

Some questions to think about

  • What does the procedure involve?
  • What are the possible benefits? How likely am I to get them?
  • What are the risks or side effects? How likely are they?
  • What happens if the procedure doesn’t work or something goes wrong?
  • What happens if I don’t want the procedure? Are there other treatments available?

ISBN: 978-1-4731-2953-5

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