The WVU Heart and Vascular Institute’s Structural Heart Disease Program is a leader in managing structural heart diseases, providing cutting edge surgical and transcatheter therapies for these complex conditions.

We have a multidisciplinary team of experts including interventional cardiologists, cardiac and vascular surgeons, dedicated nursing staff, and other specialists to ensure our patients receive the most comprehensive care available. We also have technology and the most state-of-the-art facility in the region, including brand new cardiac cath labs and hybrid operating rooms, to make a rapid diagnosis and take quick, effective action.

What is Structural Heart Disease?

Structural heart disease refers to a defect or abnormality of the heart that is not related to the coronary arteries (the heart’s valves, walls, or chambers). The condition can be present at birth (congenital), or these abnormalities can also form later in life due to wear and tear from aging, infection, or result from another underlying condition.

The most common types of structural heart disease are:

  • Aortic stenosis
  • Mitral and tricuspid regurgitation
  • Intracardiac shunt (atrial septal defect and ventricular septal defect)
  • Extracardiac shunt (Aortoatrial, aortopulmonary, etc)
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Paravalvular leak (leakage around surgical and transcatheter valves)

Quick Facts about Our Structural Heart Disease Program:

  • Second largest left atrial appendage occlusion program in the region after Cleveland Clinic 
  • The only program in West Virginia that offer the following structural heart procedures:
    • Paravalvular leak closure
    • Aortocardiac and coronary cameral fistula closure
    • Pseudoaneurysm closure
    • Alcohol septal ablation
    • Ventricular septal defect closure
    • Left atrial appendage occlusion with the Amulet device
    • Transcatheter valve in valve therapies for degenerated mitral and tricuspid valves 
    • Transcatheter mitral valve replacement with the Tendyne device
  • One of the few programs in the United States (and the only one in West Virginia) offering cerebral embolic protection during TAVR (Protected TAVR)

Contact Us

For more information about the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute’s Structural Heart Disease Program, call 855-WVU-CARE (855-988-2273).

Heart disease is something to be taken seriously. People may be able to survive clogged arteries, heart attacks, arrhythmias, and other heart issues through medication and surgery. But preventing heart disease in the first place is preferable. Anthony Morise, MD, cardiologist with the WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, gives some advice about preventing or overcoming heart disease.

What is heart disease?

Heart disease is any disease that affects the heart. Coronary artery disease is the most common form of heart disease. Coronary arteries become blocked making it difficult for oxygen and nutrients carried in the blood to get to the heart muscle. This condition can result in a myocardial infarction, commonly known as a heart attack. Other heart diseases include heart rhythm disorders, heart failure, and valve disorders.

What are some of the risk factors for heart disease?

Some factors, such as age, sex, or family history, can put a person at higher risk for coronary heart disease. These factors cannot be modified, but a number of others can be. These include cholesterol level, blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, and being overweight and sedentary. These usually begin with changing an established lifestyle, but medication may be involved if established goals cannot be met.

What if you know you are high-risk, but you don’t yet show any symptoms?

It’s important to see your primary care doctor for regular physical exams to keep track of your blood pressure, cholesterol, and other conditions that signal changes that can be a threat to your heart health. Heart patients are getting younger – a growing number of people in their 30s are showing up with a first coronary event. They often have a number of coronary risk factors, such as diabetes, smoking, or a strong family history of early coronary disease. Diabetes is a particularly bad condition to have. We emphasize the need for control of this problem, and a diabetologist is often the best person to help them get that control. Screening high-risk patients with diagnostic testing is commonly done.

So you’ve had a heart attack, what can you do to prevent a second one from happening?

People often survive a first heart attack, but their risk for a second one increases. Some significant lifestyle changes will need to occur to reduce that likelihood, and the patient must be committed to making these changes. Stopping smoking, engaging in some physical activity, attaining ideal body weight, and keeping blood sugar and cholesterol levels controlled are very important. Some of these factors become easier to control just by quitting smoking and becoming more active. In addition, dietary adjustments are usually required.

Mohamad Alkhouli, MD

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Interventional Cardiologist, Assistant Program Director, Cardiovascular Disease Fellowship Program, Medical Director of the Structual Heart Program
WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital
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Jason Moreland, MD, FACC, FSCAI

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Assistant Professor of Medicine, Heart and Vascular Institute - Morgantown; Assistant Cath Lab Director; Heart and Vascular Institute - Morgantown; Assistant Professor of Medicine, WVU School of Medicine
WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital
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Bryan Raybuck, MD, FACC, FSCAI

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Co-Director, HVI Outreach, Heart and Vascular Institute - Morgantown; Interventional Cardiologist; Director, Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory
WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital
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Lawrence Wei, MD

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Co-Director, Center for Aortic Surgery and Director, Center for Aortic Valve Disease; Associate Professor of Medicine
WVU Heart and Vascular Institute, J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital
View Profile855-WVU-CARE