Heart diseases are known to affect millions of people each year, and almost thirty percent
heart disease and bypass surgery
of these population die from certain conditions related to the heart.
There are several types of heart diseases which include arrhythmia or the abnormal beating of the heart, Mafran syndrome- a disease involving the aorta and the tissues surrounding the heart, Congenital heart disease- the occurrence of malformations in the heart before birth, heart failure- or the weakening of the heart muscle in pumping blood, and the most common of them, coronary artery disease or the hardening of the arteries that are supplying blood towards the heart, cutting the heart’s supply of oxygen and other essential components.
These conditions may at times be treated through the use of medications, and for severe conditions, surgeries, this is why heart disease and bypass surgery are linked together.
As stated earlier, coronary artery disease is the most common heart disease. Medical statistics have shown that each year, 1 out of three people develop this problem. This condition starts during the early teen years of a person.
During this stage, several debris including calcium and lipids, are being lodged in the walls of the arteries. Over the years, these debris builds up until it damages the blood vessels’ walls. As a natural response of the body, the tissues tend to heal themselves but only makes the blood vessels thick.
As this happens, other substances that travel along with blood like excess proteins and certain cells which causes inflammation are being deposited in the sticky vessel walls. Fat and other natural substances in the body join with these debris and start building plaques in the arteries causing it to become narrow and if left untreated, will be totally blocked. This condition is called atherosclerosis.
When atherosclerosis worsens and causes blockages, the heart will not get enough oxygenated blood. In this occurrence, the person may be feeling symptoms such as chest pains or angina, shortness of breath, dull pain in the shoulders, jaws or back, excessive sweating, arrhythmia, nausea, vomiting and dizziness. There are cases wherein severe chest pains will be felt but will immediately lead to a heart attack. This happening instantly needs medical attention.
People who suffer from heart diseases as such are usually prescribed medications which may include Aspirin, a drug that prevents blood clots from happening, Angiotensin II receptor blockers are used to help dilate the blood vessels so that blood can flow freely towards the heart.
Calcium channel blockers also help blood flow easier by relaxing the vessels and muscles and also prevent spasms from happening, Angiotensin- converting enzyme or ACE inhibitors are used to dilate blood vessels by blocking enzymes that causes them to constrict, and Nitrates which improves blood flow by relaxing the muscles and also help relieve the symptoms of angina.
Other people may need surgeries to be done in order to restore the blood flow towards the heart. In most cases, heart disease and bypass surgery are collaborated with each other because of its efficacy in treating the condition. This surgery is not done to all people, doctors consider the severity of the patients’ conditions, their capability to recover from the surgery, the symptoms that they are showing, other conditions that patients may be suffering from, and their overall health status.
People suffering from diabetes are not considered to be probable candidates for this procedure because of their high possibilities of acquiring nosocomial infections and risk of experiencing heart attack during the procedure. People who are suffering from heart disease and bypass surgery are their option for treatment may be informed by doctors about significant matters with regards to the procedure.
This surgical procedure is done by taking a piece of artery from a specific body part and reconnect it in the heart area to bypass the blocked artery. The procedure wherein the arteries are extracted is called grafting. Usually, doctors decide where to take the artery depending on the size of the arteries and the location and amount of obstruction. Arteries may be taken from parts of the body such as the leg, the arms, and the chest area.
These sites are said to be safe during the extraction because they are less likely to develop side effects since they get ample amounts of blood even when some of it are extracted.
For heart disease and bypass surgery, a patient may undergo two or more bypasses. The procedure is termed depending on how many bypasses are to be done, just like two is to double bypass, three is to triple bypass and so on. There are less invasive bypass surgeries but may only be done if the patient passes the criteria of the doctors.
The most common grafts used in heart disease and bypass surgery are the thoracic arteries or internal mammary arteries which are found in the chest area. This kind of graft is proven to give the best results in restoring the process of providing the heart with oxygenated blood.
The radial artery which may be found in the lower part of the arms, may also be used in grafting because the hand is said to already be getting sufficient amounts of blood from the ulnar artery alone.
This type of grafting will need several tests done before it will be approved to be used for the surgery. Certain conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, sensitive fingers and Raynaud’s syndrome are limitations to this procedure. Saphenous veins which are found in the legs may also be used.
This procedure is said to be the least invasive because the vein may be extracted without making a big incision, and is found to heal more quickly compared to the two types of grafting. Some uncommon arteries used for bypass surgery are gastroepiploic artery and inferior epigastric artery which may both be found in the abdominal areas.
There are two kinds of bypass surgeries which are on- pump surgery wherein the heart will be connected to a machine which will do the it’s job artificially during the procedure, and off- pump surgery where in the surgery is done while the heart is beating by itself.
The off- pump surgery uses more advanced and developed equipments to block some portions of the heart before doing the procedure. This will reduce the risks of the patient from undergoing a heart attack while on the table.
Most of the heart disease and bypass surgery done nowadays are through off pump bypass methods since almost all procedures have been developed to be less invasive and are done faster than before which means that the heart’s exposure will be lessened.
Most patients who undergo this kind of procedure are mostly suffering from severe vascular diseases, narrowing of the carotids, breathing dysfunctions, kidney diseases and aortic calcification.
There are limitations for this kind of bypass procedure which is why extensive tests are to be done first before planning out the treatment method. In a lesser invasive bypass surgery, the chest will be sliced at about two to three inches.
Being compared to those who undergo traditional surgeries, patients who undergo lesser invasive procedures for the heart are said to have smaller scars, will take lesser time to fully recover from their procedure, and will need utmost four days to stay in the hospital to be evaluated by doctors. Doing this procedure will also have lesser traumatic experiences, reduced pain, reduced infection possibilities and lesser occurrences of excessive bleeding.
Some doctors for heart disease and bypass surgery say that patients who undergo the procedure will undergo several changes but will definitely not affect their lives completely. Usually, a follow up consultation will be scheduled by the surgeon to see whether the wound is healing correctly, and if there are any infections in the wound site.
Doctors will also be advising patients about ways on how they could improve their lives and prescribe medications for maintenance if needed. During the first few months, they will be limiting the activities that the patients may do to avoid reopening the wound. Doctors say that it takes almost six to eight weeks before a patient goes back to regular activities such as driving and working.
Patients of heart disease and bypass surgery was their treatment option and had their chests widely open will likely have their sternum heal for twelve weeks or so. The sternum is a the bone which connects the ribs and protects the heart, the lungs and some vessels from accidents and traumatic events.
They will have more limited activities compared to patients who had lesser invasive procedures done. Lifting will be prohibited, and so are activities which requires exertion of effort. There are some activities which are said to help with the healing process of the sternum but needs to be discussed with doctors because it will depend on the patient’s healing time.
Even if heart disease and bypass surgery are known to be a good combination, other options in treating heart diseases should first be discussed with your doctors. Some cases which may be treated through medications and lifestyle changes may still save themselves from being opened up.
Patients should also be informed about the importance of the surgery and how they will recover from it after. Doctors will also discuss with the patients some programs which are significant for rehabilitating the heart and its functions.
Cardiologist In New York
These programs may include certain exercises, diets, and meditation approaches. These are usually done in groups so it is a good chance to meet other people who also went through the surgery, making it easier for patients to recover physically and socially from the surgery. In New York alone, there are well known surgeons from hospitals considered to be the best for cardiovascular procedures and overall health of the heart. They are: