Percutaneous heart valve implantation offers hope for patients with aortic stenosis.

Aortic stenosis is the most prevalent valvular heart disease and the third most common cardiovascular condition after coronary artery disease and hypertension.1 Acquired aortic stenosis primarily affects the elderly and causes debilitating signs and symptoms and decreased quality of life.2 Over time, progressive calcification and immobilization of the valve leaflets cause stiffening and narrowing of the aortic leaflets, scarring, impaired valve opening, reduced cardiac output, and, eventually, heart failure.3 Although patients usually remain asymptomatic for a long time, once the classic triad of angina, syncope, and indications of exertional dyspnea and congestion develop, the prognosis becomes dramatically worse.1 

Aortic stenosis has been documented in 2% to 4% of patients more than 65 years old; the incidence is higher in men than in women.4 Increasing evidence4,6 indicates that the disease is...

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