RWJ University Hospital Pioneers Use of MitraClip G4 in NJ

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Is First in New Jersey to Use MitraClip G4, an Innovative Heart Valve Repair Technology

New Brunswick, NJ - Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (RWJUH) New Brunswick, in partnership with Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, recently became the first site in New Jersey and one of the first in the United States to implant the MitraClip G4™ device. The device recently received approval by the FDA for treatment of mitral regurgitation, a common and serious form of heart valve disease.

Mark Russo, MD, Chief of the Division of Cardiac Surgery, Director of Structural Heart Disease, and Associate Professor of Surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, performed the first procedure, along with echocardiologist Chunguang Chen, MD, and interventional cardiologists Abdul Hakeem, MD and Pratik Patel, MD.

Mitral regurgitation occurs when the mitral valve fails to close properly during the cardiac cycle. This allows blood to flow backward through the heart, which stresses the heart. As the condition progresses, it leads to symptoms that can include fatigue, shortness of breath, and heart failure.

MitraClip repairs leaky mitral valves without the need for open-heart surgery. It does not require an incision. The device is delivered to the heart through a catheter that is passed into the leg vein. The clip works by bringing the mitral valve leaflets closer together and thus reducing the backflow of blood known as mitral regurgitation. This restores the heart's ability to pump oxygenated blood more efficiently.

MitraClip Post-Procedure Side View

More than 100,000 patients worldwide have successfully been treated with MitraClip. The New England Journal of Medicine recently reported that compared to medical therapy, in a selected population of patients, MitraClip reduced symptoms in patients, prevented hospitalizations and improved survival rates.

MitraClip Coapting Mitral Valve LeafletsThe Mitraclip G4 device improvements include a wider grasping area that can provide a greater reduction in leak after one clip. This can help avoid the need for delivering multiple clips, thus decreasing the complexity of the procedure, and shortening procedure times. It also has a new leaflet grasping technology called Controlled Gripper Actuation™, which allows physicians to grasp leaflets simultaneously or independently, giving more control and precision for device placement. These changes mean more patients can be treated with MitraClip, including those with significant flail pathology, whose valve leaflets can move in uncoordinated directions.

“As the first in New Jersey to implant the Mitraclip G4, Robert Wood University Hospital continues to serve as the state’s premier mitral valve program with outcomes that far exceed national benchmarks in safety, life expectancy, and risks of complications,” said Dr. Russo. “With access to a constantly increasing number of novel technologies, including the G4 device, we can provide safe, effective, and more customizable therapies to address cardiovascular disease, including mitral valve disease. This allows us to meet the needs of more patients and continually improve our already best-in-class outcomes.”

Close-Up View of the MitraClip G4
Some MitraClip G4 clips; the same or smaller than the size of a dime

Visit Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital New Brunswick's Heart and Vascular Care page for more about heart conditions and our state-of-the-art treatments.