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Everything you need to know about coronary artery bypass grafting

21 Apr, 2022

Blog author iconHealthtrip Team
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In current times, it is very common to be diagnosed with heart disease, as these conditions affect people of all age groups and backgrounds. Heart problems such as hypertension, are managed by medicines and practicing some lifestyle modifications like eating healthy food, practicing yoga, meditation, etc. However, severe cardiovascular diseases such as angina, and a heart attack may call for bypass.

Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is an advanced surgical procedure done to manage similar severe heart conditions. This surgery is usually performed to bypass the blood supply to the heart muscle through the blockages and it may take some time to recover.

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Procedure

The bypass surgery aims to improve the blood flow to the heart muscle and relieve or improve pain in the chest and other symptoms. This can also reduce your risk of heart attack and help you live longer.

Why do I need coronary artery bypass surgery?

Your specialist may use CABG surgery to treat a narrowing or blockage of one or more of the coronary arteries to restore the blood supply to your heart muscle.

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Symptoms of coronary artery disease include

  • Pain in chest
  • Palpitations
  • Severe tiredness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Swelling in the hands and feet
  • Indigestion

Sometimes, the patient may not have any symptoms in early coronary artery diseases, still, the disease will continue to progress until there’s enough artery blockage to cause problems and symptoms. If there is a continuous decrease in the blood supply to your heart muscle as a result of increasing blockage of a coronary artery, you might suffer a heart attack. If the blood flow to the particular area of the heart muscle can’t be restored, the tissue dies.

CABG indication depends on various factors mainly the symptoms and severity of the disease. Some of them include:

  • Left main artery disease or equivalent
  • Triple vessel disease
  • Abnormal left ventricle function
  • Failed PTCA
  • Immediately post-myocardial infarction
  • Life-threatening arrhythmias caused by

Also, read - Average Life Expectancy After Bypass Surgery

What are the risks associated with coronary artery bypass graft surgery?

Possible risks linked with coronary artery bypass graft surgery are:

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  • Bleeding during or after the procedure
  • Blood clots can cause heart attack, lung problems, or stroke
  • Infection at the incision site
  • Breathing issues
  • Pneumonia
  • Pancreatitis
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Kidney failure
  • Failure of the graft
  • Death

There may also be other risks depending on the specific medical condition. However, there is no need to worry as your doctor will explain and brief you about the procedure and will only perform the surgery if the benefits outweigh the risk.

How do I get ready for coronary artery bypass surgery?

After you are ready for the surgery, you will be asked to sign a consent form. After reviewing your health history, your doctor will do a complete physical exam to ensure that you are in good health before having the procedure. You may also need to undergo some blood tests or other diagnostic tests. You will be asked to avoid drinking or eating for 8 hours before the procedure. It is important to inform the doctor about your sensitivity or allergy to any medicine, iodine, latex, tape, or anesthesia medicines (general or local). Informed your doctor about all the medicines, vitamins, and supplements that you are taking. Also, inform them if you have a history of bleeding disorders or if you are consuming any blood-thinning medicines or other medicines which affect blood clotting. You might be told to stop some of these medicines before the surgery. Inform your doctor if you have a pacemaker or other implanted device. Please ensure to quit smoking as soon as possible as this will improve your chances for a successful recovery from surgery and benefit your overall health. Do not hesitate to ask any questions from your doctor if something is bothering you.

What happens during coronary artery bypass?

Generally, initially, you will be asked to remove your jewelry or any other object which can interfere with the procedure. You will change into a hospital gown and empty the bladder. Once you are done with this you will be moved to an operating theatre. Anesthesia will be given and your vitals will be monitored. A breathing tube will be put into your throat and you will be connected to a ventilator, which will breathe for you during the surgery. An intravenous (IV) line will be inserted in your arm or hand and other catheters will be put in the neck and wrist to monitor the blood pressure and your heart, as well as to take blood samples. The skin over the surgical site will be cleaned with an antiseptic solution and once all the tubes and monitors are in place, the surgeon will make incisions in one or both legs or one of your wrists to access the blood vessel to be used for the grafts. He/she will remove the vessel and close the incision. The surgeon will make an incision below Adam's apple to just above the navel

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We are committed to providing the best healthcare services to our patients. We have a team of trained and highly dedicated health experts who will be there by your side right from the beginning of your journey.

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