- Associated Press - Thursday, November 6, 2014

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - In a headline on a story Nov. 5, The Associated Press inaccurately described a heart surgery conducted in Ohio. The surgery was the first in the United States involving a new kind of bovine valve, not the first bovine heart valve surgery in the United States.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Ohio man receives experimental bovine heart valve

Northwest Ohio man becomes first in country to receive experimental heart valve

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) - A northwest Ohio man is recovering after becoming the first person in the country to receive an experimental heart valve made of cow tissue.

Rick Sobecki, 56, decided to see a doctor in August when he was short of breath, The Blade in Toledo reported (https://bit.ly/1xcUOYy). When Dr. Michael Moront of ProMedica Toledo Hospital found significant blockage in Sobecki’s aortic valve, he asked him to participate in a clinical trial using a new form of an artificial bovine valve.

Sobecki agreed to the procedure and underwent open heart surgery in October.

The clinical trial is being conducted in 40 hospitals in the United States and Europe, but Sobecki’s surgery marked the first time the procedure has been performed in the U.S. Since then, Moront has done the procedure on two others in Toledo, and he said all three patients are doing well.

Existing options for aortic valve replacement had major drawbacks, Moront said. Replacement valves made from pig tissue work well but don’t have a long lifespan. Existing mechanical devices can last forever but require patients to take blood-thinning medication that cause an increased risk of stroke.

Doctors hope the bovine valve will last patients at least 15 years.

So far, Sobecki is feeling pretty good, he said.

“I’m hoping I get a second chance at life and get to enjoy it,” he said.

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