Coronary Surgery


Coronary Bypass Surgery: Past, Present, and Future

Although some have described cardiac surgery as a dying specialty, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Cardiac surgery today is seeing astronomical growth with innovations in minimally invasive procedures. Therefore, cardiac surgery is not sliding into obsolescence; it’s simply becoming safer and less invasive. One area of cardiac surgery – coronary artery bypass – has seen significant growth in the past decade. From minimally invasive procedures to hybrid revascularization, coronary bypass surgery is becoming increasingly safer and more effective. It is also becoming far less painful and time-consuming than open-heart coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG). A Bit of History  In the 1950s, the advent of cardiopulmonary bypass was revolutionary for the field of cardiac surgery. The first successful open heart surgery utilizing a heart-lung machine was performed in 1953. The heart-lung machine – also known as a “pump” – allows for the heart to be stopped during surgery, as it circulates and oxygenates blood for the surgeon to work on a still heart that is empty of blood. However, what seemed to be an unending supply of patients contributed to what may have been innovative complacency. In due time, this self-assurance was shattered by the advent of percutaneous coronary intervention (non-surgical procedures that improve cardiac blood flow). These procedures were able to provide the same effects as CABG and greatly reduced the volume of coronary artery bypass surgeries. It also resulted in a decline in trainees in the field. These advances have been largely consumer-driven by a society that’s always on the go, so less invasive procedures mean faster recovery times. Coronary Bypass Surgery Today  While the...

Inoperable Coronary Patients

Inoperable Coronary Patient The two most important questions asked by an inoperable coronary patient: What makes a coronary patient inoperable? How can we improve on our surgical solutions to save the life of an inoperable coronary patient? Once you know the basic technical challenges, inoperable coronary patients will understand the solutions we have developed in these surgery cases. New technologies have made the difference for so many heart patients that were otherwise hopeless and inoperable. A coronary artery bypass operation clears the pathway for blood on blocked coronary arteries. A pathway is directly connected between the aorta and a spot on the coronary artery downstream from where the blockage occurs. If steps in this surgical process can’t be carried out within certain standards, your local doctor may not be able to offer you this life-saving operation, referring to this as, “inoperable”. That’s where we come in. Solutions for Inoperable Coronary Patients If the aorta is heavily calcified: We re-route the blood supply through internal mammary arteries avoiding “cracking”. If there are not enough veins or arteries: We can graft, harvest, and replace new perfectly healthy tissues from elsewhere. If the coronary vessels are too severely and diffusely diseased: We can double graft the tissue to eliminate blockages or use a technology called endoarterectomy where we remove plaque from clogged tissue. If the patient is deemed to old or fragile: We believe that age, frailty should not determine your quality of life or your medical choices! If the patient has patient has bad lungs, bad kidneys, bad liver and/or has had a prior open heart operation: We use beating heart...