Heart surgery is done to correct problems with the heart. Many heart surgeries are done each year in the United States for various heart problems. Heart surgery is used for both children and adults.
DOCTORS ALSO USE HEART SURGERY TO: Repair or replace heart valves, which control blood flow through the heart Repair abnormal or damaged structures in the heart Implant medical devices that help control the heartbeat or support heart function and blood flow Replace a damaged heart with a healthy heart from a donor
TYPES OF CARDIO SURGERY Open Heart Surgery Modern beating-heart surgery Minimally invasive surgery Pediatric cardiovascular surgery
OPEN-HEART SURGERY Surgeons also use off-pump, or beating heart, surgery to do CABG. This approach is like traditional open-heart surgery because the chest bone is opened to access the heart. However, the heart isn't stopped, and a heart-lung bypass machine isn't used. Off-pump heart surgery isn't right for all patients. Work with your doctor to decide whether this type of surgery is an option for you. Your doctor will carefully consider your heart problem, age, overall health, and other factors that may affect the surgery.
MINIMALLY INVASIVE HEART SURGERY For minimally invasive heart surgery, a surgeon makes small incisions (cuts) in the side of the chest between the ribs. This type of surgery may or may not use a heart-lung bypass machine. Minimally invasive heart surgery is used to do some bypass and maze surgeries. It's also used to repair or replace heart valves, insert pacemakers or ICDs, or take a vein or artery from the body to use as a bypass graft for CABG. One type of minimally invasive heart surgery that is becoming more common is robotic-assisted surgery. For this surgery, a surgeon uses a computer to control surgical tools on thin robotic arms. The tools are inserted through small incisions in the chest. This allows the surgeon to do complex and highly precise surgery. The surgeon always is in total control of the robotic arms; they don't move on their own.
BEATHING-HEART SURGERY Surgeons also use off-pump, or beating heart, surgery to do CABG. This approach is like traditional open-heart surgery because the chest bone is opened to access the heart. However, the heart isn't stopped, and a heart- lung bypass machine isn't used. Off-pump heart surgery isn't right for all patients. Work with your doctor to decide whether this type of surgery is an option for you. Your doctor will carefully consider your heart problem, age, overall health, and other factors that may affect the surgery.
HEART TRANSPLANT A heart transplant is surgery to remove a person's diseased heart and replace it with a healthy heart from a deceased donor. Most heart transplants are done on patients who have end-stage heart failure. Heart failure is a condition in which the heart is damaged or weak. As a result, it can't pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. "End-stage" means the condition is so severe that all treatments, other than heart transplant, have failed. Patients on the waiting list for a donor heart receive ongoing treatment for heart failure and other medical conditions. Ventricular assist devices (VADs) or total artificial hearts (TAHs) might be used to treat these patients.
POST-SURGICAL PROCEDURES Following an open-heart procedure, along with many other surgical procedures, there are certain steps that a patient needs to take post-operation. Incision care is very important to not only heal the scar that occurred from the surgery in the best way possible, but also to avoid getting any infections that could occur if the incision is not cleaned properly. Aside from taking care of the incisions and scarring that is present, it is important to understand that you body is still getting accustomed to something new therefore other side effects may occur. Not having an appetite along with swelling can be common side effects to any surgery therefore it is beneficial to expect these changes when approaching a surgery as serious as open-heart surgery.
The results of heart surgery in adults often are excellent. Heart surgery can reduce symptoms, improve quality of life, and improve the chances of survival.