What are the Risks and Possible Complications of a TAVI Procedure?

Before giving your consent to have a TAVI procedure, your doctor will explain the possible risks and ask you for directions should you experience a life-threatening complication. Below is a list of some of the complications that can happen during a TAVI procedure.

Blood Vessel Injury/Bleeding: The TAVI catheter is placed in a large artery in your groin, therefore there is a risk of injuring the artery and causing bleeding or blockage which may require surgical repair.

Kidney Injury/Failure: During the TAVI procedure, a special dye is injected into your bloodstream to make your aortic valve and blood vessels show up under X-ray. This dye can be toxic for your kidneys which, in rare cases, can lead to dialysis.

Need for a Permanent Pacemaker: When the TAVI valve is implanted, it can sometimes interfere with the electrical conduction system in your heart. If this happens, you will need to have a permanent pacemaker.

Stroke: During the TAVI procedure, there is a possibility some of the c alcified plaques that have built up around your aortic valve may break away and become lodged in small arteries in your brain. This may lead to a stroke.

Death: In some cases, life-threatening complications may occur while you are having the TAVI procedure.

What Happens if a Life-Threatening Complication Occurs During My Tavi Procedure?

A TAVI is a complex procedure with possible life-threatening complications that would require emergency surgical intervention to save your life.

Some examples of these complications include:

  • Tear of the wall of the aorta
  • Tear of the root of the aorta where the TAVI valve is placed
  • Perforation of the heart
  • Dislodgement of the TAVI valve after it has been placed

If this type of complication occurs, the decision about whether to proceed to emergency surgery will be made by your doctors according to your wishes and consent.

Emergency surgery, in this setting, carries a greater risk of death and other complications. As such, it is very important you and your family have a discussion about what you want.

You will be asked, at the time of the consent signing, whether you wish to have emergency surgery in the event of a life-threatening complication. This will help your doctors decide how to proceed if this unlikely situation is to occur.