Memorial is First in South Florida to Use Harmony for Valve Replacement

June 15, 2022

Marc first harmony valve patient

Marc Chatzky may not feel like a cardiac pioneer, but he is, at least in South Florida. The Deerfield Beach resident was the first to have a defective pulmonary valve replaced without open-heart surgery, instead using a minimally-invasive transcatheter procedure and the recently-approved Harmony™ valve.

The approach, which enabled Chatzky to avoid the pain and extended recovery time of an open-heart surgery, was done in the Memorial Cardiac and Vascular Institute’s cardiac catheterization lab. It involved inserting the Harmony valve into the heart via a tube fed through a vein in the groin, with the device expanding to a shape and size that fit Chatzky’s heart after placement, a marked improvement over traditional-sized valves.

For Chatzky, who had several open-heart surgeries as a child to correct congenital heart issues, the new approach fit his current lifestyle. He was back on his feet the day after the procedure and back to work shortly after. “It was better than being out for maybe six months and I was quickly back to doing normal things. Now my bosses are trying to slow me down because I’m working too much,” Chatzky joked.

The procedure was completed by a team led by the co-medical directors of Memorial’s Adult Congenital Heart Disease program, Drs. Todd Roth and Larry Latson, with an assist from Dr. Tom Forbes and Dr. Peter Guyon, interventional cardiologists at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital's Heart Institute.

“Once we’ve determined that the patient meets criteria that a pulmonary valve is necessary, we go through a series of testing to make sure that the Harmony valve is appropriate for that patient’s anatomy,” Roth said. “Our being the first in the region to do this procedure speaks to our innovation as a center of excellence for adult congenital heart disease care.”

For Chatzky, who had been experiencing chest pain and whose heart was actively failing him, the procedure was just what the patient ordered.

First Harmony Valve Procedure Marc

Learn how Marc avoided open-heart surgery with our first TPVR procedure in South Florida using the FDA-approved Harmony TPV.