Heart Disease Home > Heart Attack With Off-Pump Bypass Surgery

The possibility exists of having a heart attack with off-pump bypass surgery. The heart's oxygen demands are higher during surgery and other stressful events, so a decrease during bypass surgery can cause serious complications. Ischemia -- when the heart doesn't get enough blood and oxygen -- can cause parts of the heart muscle to die. A heart attack with off-pump bypass surgery can result, causing serious damage.

Heart Attack With Off-Pump Bypass Surgery: An Overview

Heart attacks can be a serious complication of off-pump bypass surgery (also known as beating heart bypass surgery). They happen in approximately 3 to 5 out of 100 procedures.
During stressful events, such as surgery, your heart needs more blood and oxygen than normal to work at its best. Your heart may already be stressed because one or more coronary arteries are blocked, which decreases the amount of blood the heart gets. Having other heart or lung problems can increase this stress even more.
If the heart doesn't get enough oxygen, it can be damaged. When the heart doesn't get enough blood and oxygen, it's called "ischemia." Sometimes, this lack of oxygen happens for just a short time. However, if a section of the heart goes for too long without enough oxygen, that area of heart muscle can die. This is what happens during a heart attack. Depending on how serious the damage is, a heart attack may be fatal.
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Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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