September 1, 2015
Federal regulators have just approved a device that will allow physicians to replace faulty heart valves without open-heart surgery. The first patients to receive the treatment included a few dozen pigs. As Americans are living longer, aortic valve disease has grown more common. This new procedure offers hope to patients who could not undergo open-heart surgery. The use of pigs helped ensure the procedure was safe and effective, before it was tried in human patients.