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Beating Heart Bypass Surgery Expectations

Beating heart bypass surgery expectations should be the same for the patient and the doctor. With proper rehabilitation, most patients heal relatively quickly following the surgery. The surgery often eases symptoms and allows a higher quality of life, but grafts can close, causing symptoms to return. When discussing beating heart bypass surgery expectations with your doctor, consider the factors, many of them related to lifestyle, that can cause the grafts to close prematurely.

What Are Typical Beating Heart Bypass Surgery Expectations?

Your beating heart bypass surgery recovery will depend on many things, including your overall health and how serious your illness was before the surgery.
Most people heal quickly after beating heart bypass surgery and the proper rehabilitation. They usually feel much better than they did before the surgery. Patients who have beating heart bypass surgery often spend less time in the hospital than those who use the heart-lung machine. But no matter which method is used for coronary artery bypass surgery, it usually helps the heart work better and often relieves many or all symptoms.
After your surgery, it may take several weeks for your strength and energy to return. You will have a scar on your chest that can take several months to heal. You may still have chest pain and shortness of breath, which can be caused by the surgery. After you heal, you may still need to limit your physical activity.
It's important to know that your grafts may close over time. In people who have coronary artery bypass surgery while on the heart-lung machine, the grafts usually last from 10 to 20 years. How long they last when the grafts are placed during beating heart surgery isn't known yet, but it's expected to be a similar time period. How long the grafts stay open also depends partly on whether the graft was taken from an artery or vein. Your surgeon will choose a graft that he or she feels will give the best results for your particular situation.
Grafts often close sooner in patients who:
  • Use tobacco products
  • Have untreated high cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia)
  • Don't make dietary and/or lifestyle changes after the surgery.
If the graft does close, your symptoms may come back. Unfortunately, a repeat bypass surgery is harder to do and may not work as well as the first one.
Living a healthy lifestyle may also improve the quality and the length of your life. Your surgery can give you a new lease on life, but the rest is up to you.
If you have questions or concerns about beating heart bypass surgery expectations after reading this article, talk to your doctor. It's important that your expectations about the surgery match your doctor's.
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