The development of a bioprosthesis was generated by recognition of its important potential advantages over a mechanical prosthesis. Considerations of choices of animal and tissue sources, preparation procedures, and patient applicability led researchers from the allograft to xenograft, and then to the valvular bioprosthesis. At the present time, glutaraldehyde-preserved xenograft valves appear to be a reasonable alternative in valvular replacement. Their limited durability must be weighed against the disadvantages of a mechanical prosthesis in deciding which to use.
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