Heart pumps blood and keeps the organs and tissues running. Hence it’s a crucial organ. To treat the heart ailments, the doctor might recommend an open heart surgery. Keep reading to know about its types and procedure…
Open heart surgery is a procedure in which the chest is cut open to fix the muscles, valves or arteries of the heart.
Types of coronary heart surgery
It is of 3 types:
- On-pump surgery: In this surgery, the doctor uses a heart-lung machine that will temporarily perform the heart’s function i.e. it will supply oxygen rich blood to the organs and tissues. This is known as the traditional form of open heart surgery.
- Beating heart or off-pump: In this surgery, the surgeon will slow the heart rate with a medication or device and he/she will operate on an actively beating heart.
- Robot-assisted surgery: In this surgery, the surgeon uses a special computer to operate robotic arms that carry out the surgery. This type of surgery is limited to a few specific procedures.
Why is it performed?
The doctor will recommend an open heart surgery to treat the following conditions:
- Congenital defect repair: This is performed to treat the heart problems present at birth
- Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG): This is performed to treat the blocked coronary arteries
- Heart transplant: In this, a damaged heart is replaced with a donor heart
- Heart valve repair or replacement: This is done to repair the valves that are not functioning properly
- Implantation of medical devices: This is carried out to support proper heart function
- Transmyocardial laser revascularization: In this, the surgeon will use laser to unblock the coronary arteries
- Maze procedure: It is done to block the irregular electrical signals through the heart
How is it performed?
Typically an open heart surgery will require 4 to 6 hours. The basic steps in this surgery are as follows:
- Firstly, general anaesthesia is given to the patient to put him/her to sleep so that he/she won’t experience pain.
- Next, the surgeon will make 8-10 inches incision on the chest.
- Thereafter, he will cut through the patient’s breastbone to expose the heart.
- In on-pump surgery, the patient will be connected to heart-lung machine.
- Surgeon will use a healthy vein or artery to make a new path around the blocked artery.
- He/she will close the breastbone with a wire and will leave the wire inside the body.
- Finally, the cut is stitched.
In older patients who have had multiple surgeries, small titanium plates are used to rejoin the breastbone once the surgery is completed.
If you have more doubts regarding open heart surgery, consult a cardiologist online at eVaidya now!
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