Heart Valves

The heart valves regulate the flow of blood to and from the heart. For many years, diseased or malfunctioning valves have been replaced with mechanical valves or valves made from animal tissue. However, many people cannot tolerate the blood thinning medication required for these valves. For this reason, the best option for repairing heart valves is through the use of donated human heart valves.

· Donor hearts that do not meet the strict criteria for transplant can often be used for heart valves. The delicate process of dissecting the heart valves requires that the whole hear be removed from the donor.

· The human heart valve can be cryo-preserved for several years before transplantation