Transcatheter aortic valve implantation in Asia
The use of transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) to treat severe symptomatic aortic valve stenosis has increased exponentially in the last decade. This rapid expansion was seen predominantly in Western developed nations and has been fuelled by favourable results reported from a plethora of well-publicized randomized controlled trials, large retrospective series and national registries. Now, TAVI has become the standard of care for inoperable patients and an alternative to open surgery in patients who are at intermediate to high risk for open surgery. Notwithstanding these positive results, Asia has been relatively slow to adopt this technology despite a potentially large patient pool. Unique features of Asian medical environments and differences in Asian anatomy affecting TAVI uptake in Asia will be discussed. This article serves to outline the various challenging aspects of disseminating TAVI in Asian countries.