Heart Surgery


Heart-related problems do not always require surgery. Sometimes they can be addressed with lifestyle changes, medications, or nonsurgical procedures. For example, catheter ablation uses energy to make small scars in your heart tissue to prevent abnormal electrical signals from moving through your heart. Coronary angioplasty is a minimally invasive procedure in which a stent is inserted into a narrowed or blocked coronary artery to hold it open. Nonetheless, surgery is often needed to address problems such as heart failure, plaque buildup that partially or totally blocks blood flow in a coronary artery, faulty heart valves, dilated or diseased major blood vessels (such as the aorta), and abnormal heart rhythms.

Heart surgery is any surgery done on the heart muscle, valves, arteries, or the aorta and other large arteries connected to the heart. The term "open heart surgery" means that you are connected to a heart-lung bypass machine, or bypass pump during surgery.

Heart surgery, also known as cardiac surgery, is a medical procedure performed to treat various conditions affecting the heart. It involves surgical interventions on the heart or the blood vessels connected to it. Heart surgery can be categorized into several types, depending on the specific condition being treated. Here are some common types of heart surgery:

Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG):

CABG is a procedure to treat coronary artery disease (CAD), which occurs when the coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle become narrowed or blocked due to the buildup of plaque.

Valve Replacement or Repair:

Heart valve surgery is performed to repair or replace damaged or malfunctioning heart valves. There are four heart valves: aortic, mitral, tricuspid, and pulmonary. Valve repair involves fixing the existing valve, while valve replacement involves removing the damaged valve and replacing it with an artificial valve or a biological tissue valve.

Aortic Aneurysm Repair:

Aortic aneurysms occur when a section of the aorta, the body's main artery, becomes weakened and bulges. This condition can be life-threatening if the aneurysm ruptures. Surgery may involve replacing the weakened aortic segment with a synthetic graft to prevent rupture.

Heart Transplant:

Heart transplantation is considered when a patient's heart is severely damaged and cannot function adequately. A healthy donor heart is transplanted into the patient. Heart transplants are reserved for cases where other treatments have failed, and a suitable donor heart is available.

Congenital Heart Defect Repair:

Some individuals are born with structural heart abnormalities, known as congenital heart defects. Surgery may be necessary to repair or correct these defects. The type of surgery depends on the specific defect and its severity.

Arrhythmia Surgery:

Arrhythmias are abnormal heart rhythms that can sometimes be treated surgically. Procedures like atrial fibrillation ablation aim to correct irregular heart rhythms.

Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) Implantation:

LVADs are mechanical devices implanted in patients with severe heart failure to assist the weakened heart in pumping blood. They are sometimes used as a bridge to heart transplantation or as destination therapy.

Heart surgery is a complex and highly specialized field of medicine that requires a skilled surgical team and advanced technology. The choice of surgical procedure depends on the patient's specific condition, overall health, and the recommendations of their healthcare providers. It's important to discuss the risks, benefits, and alternatives with a cardiac surgeon to make informed decisions about heart surgery.