Aortic valvuloplasty is the repair of a stenotic aortic valve using a balloon catheter inside the valve. The balloon is placed into the aortic valve that has become stiff from calcium buildup. The balloon is then inflated in an effort to increase the opening size of the valve and improving blood flow.
According to the ACC/AHA 2006 Guidelines for the Management of Patients With Valvular Heart Disease, balloon valvuloplasty (also referred to as balloon valvotomy) is not to be recommended, except for certain adolescent congenital defects. The preferred alternative, if available, is aortic valve replacement.
Alternatively, as of late 2006, percutaneous aortic valve replacement is being trialled as a less invasive operation to replace dysfunctional valves.