Heart surgery is a procedure where the surgeon cuts open the chest region to perform an operation on the muscles, valves, or the arteries. The conventional process performed on adults is the coronary artery bypass grafting. The procedure involves grafting of a healthy artery to that of a blocked artery. It allows in the creation of a bypass, which helps in bringing fresh blood to the heart.

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Can You Die From Heart Surgery?

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Can You Die From Heart Surgery?

There is a decrease in the number of deaths for heart surgery even when the risks involved are high. The reason is advancement in the technology and availability of data. Robotic surgeries are becoming popular, which are offering near 0% mortality rate. However, a few may see death as the elevated result because of sudden developments during surgery. Although, surgeons prepare themselves for any hardship or things that can go out of line at times.

Why is Open Heart Surgery The Answer for Heart Problems?

Open heart surgery is the answer when the patient requires replacement of heart valve, grafting, and bypass. Coronary heart diseases occur due to narrowness formed in the blood vessels that carry both oxygen and blood. The medical term is a hardening of the arteries.

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Hardening of the arteries occurs because of accumulation of plaque. Due to this, the flow of blood receives interruption, making it difficult for the rest of the body to obtain blood and oxygen in the required volume. The excessive functioning of the heart during this period increases pressure and causes heart failure. Open-heart surgery is also helpful in:

  • Repairing heart valves.
  • Fixing abnormal regions of the heart.
  • Implanting medical devices that ensure proper functioning of the heart.
  • Replacing the damaged heart with that of a donor's heart.

Risks of Open Heart Surgery

The following are the risks involved in open-heart surgery:

According to studies, the use of the heart-lung machine increases the risks. Additional risk includes the occurrence of neurological disorders.

What Happens After The Heart Surgery?

After completion of the open heart surgery, the patient remains the ICU for a day or two. The doctor shifts the patient to the general ward and monitors the condition. During this period, the surgeon suggests sternal precautions to ensure that the healing is accurate and the breastbone does not fall away from the original position.

The caretaker provides the needed support along with the rehabilitation member providing instructions on sternal precautions. Following them is essential to ensure that there is no breakage to the sternal bone, which otherwise could lead to infections and death.

Follow Up After Surgery

Follow up by the doctor after the heart surgery is the critical aspect and paves the path for quick recovery. Depending on the technique involved and the procedure, the doctor will offer instructions for recovery. The first element is to provide a shield to the incision region. It is essential to keep it dry and warm. Taking a bath is preferable only when there is no drainage from the incision, and the healing is en route as planned. Frequent inspections will be helpful in preventing damage to the site. Inspections include:

  • Fever.
  • Warmth across the line of the incision.
  • Any sign of redness around the incision.
  • Oozing or increased drainage from the incision site.
  • Pain management, diet control, and sleep are additional factors for quick recovery from heart surgery.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: August 28, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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