Cardiac surgery

From WikiMD's Health & Wellness Encyclopedia

Cardiac surgery, commonly referred to as cardiovascular surgery, is a specialized domain within the broader field of surgery, focusing on interventions involving the heart and its associated great vessels. Performed by highly trained specialists known as cardiac surgeons, these procedures address a myriad of conditions ranging from ischemic heart diseases to congenital abnormalities. As medical knowledge and techniques have advanced, cardiac surgery has emerged as a life-saving intervention for countless patients across the globe.

Coronary artery bypass surgery

Historical Overview

Cardiac surgery has evolved substantially since its inception:

  • The first documented heart surgeries were attempts to repair wounds, not to address internal cardiac diseases.
  • The 20th century witnessed significant strides in this field, with pioneering procedures like the heart-lung machine introduction and the first heart transplantation.

Types of Cardiac Surgery

Cardiac surgery encompasses a wide range of procedures, including:

  • Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG): Used predominantly to treat ischemic heart diseases. It involves grafting blood vessels to circumvent blocked coronary arteries and restore blood flow.
  • Congenital heart disease correction: Surgeries like septal defect repairs and patent ductus arteriosus closures address congenital anomalies.
  • Valvular surgery: Procedures such as valve repairs, replacements, and annuloplasties are conducted to remedy valvular heart diseases of various etiologies, including atherosclerosis, rheumatic heart disease, and endocarditis.
  • Heart transplantation: This involves replacing a diseased heart with a healthy donor heart. It's considered for patients with end-stage heart failure or irreversible heart diseases.
  • Aneurysm repair: Surgical correction of weakened areas of the heart wall or aorta.
  • Arrhythmia Surgery: Procedures like atrial fibrillation ablation can be used to treat rhythm disturbances.

Indications and Diagnosis

Candidates for cardiac surgery usually exhibit symptoms or complications of:

Diagnostics tools aiding in these decisions include:

Risks and Recovery

Like all surgical interventions, cardiac surgeries come with inherent risks, such as:

  • Infections
  • Blood clots
  • Heart rhythm problems
  • Neurological complications
  • Recovery duration and prognosis vary based on the surgery type, the patient's overall health, and other individual factors.

Future Prospects

With advancements in technology and medical understanding, minimally invasive procedures, robotic surgeries, and personalized treatments based on genetic insights are emerging trends in cardiac surgery.

See also


Latest articles - Cardiac surgery

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