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In Heart Valves, The End of Watchful Waiting?

This article was originally published in Start Up

Executive Summary

Health Research International has just issued a report, "US Opportunities in Heart Valve Disease Management." According to the report, the market for valve replacement and repair products will grow from more than $500 million in 2004 to some $900 million in 2010, with the greatest growth occurring in percutaneous valve products.

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NeoChord Inc.

NeoChord wants to enable less invasive mitral valve repair with the NeoChord DS1000 is a tool for implanting artificial chordae tendineae made of suturing material while the heart is still beating.

Heart Valves in Europe: The Mix Will Change

According to "European Markets for Heart Valve Repair and Replacement Products," Medtech Insight's recent report, in the coming years growth in the heart valve industry will be somewhat flat in Europe-with a compound annual growth rate in the overall number of procedures of 1.6% between now and 2013. However, that number reflects a drop in the number of mechanical valves used, and a rise in tissue valves, which are enjoying increased uptake with each generation of technological improvements.

ValveXchange Inc.

In heart valve surgery, there have been no home runs yet among the numerous efforts to improve the durability of tissue valves. ValveXchange Inc. has a different solution: improving the way that worn valves are replaced. The start-up is developing a tissue valve with exchangeable leaflets that can be exchanged either percutaneously or via minimally invasive techniques. By focusing on the replacement procedure, ValveXchange aims to make bioprosthetic valves more attractive to the increasingly younger patient population for whom its faster and safer exchange technology will provide a lifetime solution.

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