Transcatheter heart valves are used to replace natural heart valves in the human body. Heart valves in the heart are of four types: the aortic valve, which controls the flow of blood from the left ventricle into the aorta; the mitral valve, which controls the flow of blood from the left atrium to the left ventricle; tricuspid valve, which controls the flow of blood from the right atrium to the right ventricle; and the pulmonary valve, which controls the flow of blood from the right ventricle to the pulmonary artery carrying blood to the lungs.
A dysfunction of any of these four heart valves can have fatal consequences, due to the vital importance of maintaining the unidirectional flow of blood in the human circulatory system. Blood flowing back into the atria from the ventricles, or from the aorta or pulmonary artery into the ventricles, can be caused by stenosis or other conditions and results in an insufficient supply of oxygenated blood to the body.
Transcatheter heart valves are designed to replace dysfunctional heart valves. Currently, transcatheter aortic valves are the dominant force in the transcatheter heart valve market, while transcatheter mitral valves are slowly gaining prominence, particularly in North America. The market for transcatheter heart valves is also supported by the growing preference of patients and doctors alike for minimally invasive surgeries.
Benefits over Open Heart Surgeries to Propel Transcatheter Heart Valve Market
The minimally invasive nature of transcatheter heart valve replacement operations is a major growth driver for the global transcatheter heart valve market. This is a significant advantage over traditional open-heart surgeries, where the patient was more at risk from surgical complications and infections, and was also invalided for a significantly longer time than after transcatheter heart valve replacements.
The geriatric population in Europe is expected to experience steady growth in the next decade and more owing to development of healthcare infrastructure and better lifestyle choices made by progressively younger generations. This will increase the scope for the Europe transcatheter heart valve market in the coming years, since geriatric patients are more likely to fall prey to cardiac problems that require transcatheter heart valve replacements.
Mitral regurgitation, wherein some of the blood in the left ventricle escapes back into the left atrium when the left ventricle contracts owing to malfunction of the mitral valve, is a mounting concern in Europe. Since the left ventricle delivers oxygenated blood to the whole body through the aorta, this results in an insufficiency of pure blood in the body and possible overload of the left atrium. Safe treatment of mitral regurgitation offered by transcatheter mitral valve replacement is expected to support the Europe transcatheter heart valve market in the coming years.
Pending Mitral Valve Replacements Sanction for Use in Europe Healthcare Sector Major Roadblock for Market
Transcatheter mitral valve replacement devices are a relatively smaller part of the overall transcatheter heart valve market at present. Some of the first mitral device replacements have recently been developed in the U.S. but are yet to be approved in Europe. This is the prime roadblock for the transcatheter heart valve market in Europe at present.