Coronary Artery Bypass Graft in Orange County, CA

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Most commonly referred to as simply “bypass surgery”, this surgery is often performed in people who have angina (chest pain) and coronary artery disease (where plaque has built up in the arteries). During the surgery, a bypass is created by grafting a piece of a vein above and below the blocked area of a coronary artery, enabling blood to flow around the obstruction. Veins are usually taken from the leg, but arteries from the chest may also be used to create a bypass graft.

Our surgeons perform many coronary bypass procedures with robot assistance using the da Vinci ®. Patients can have a standalone Robot Assisted CABG, a Hybrid procedure (meaning a Robot Assisted CABG at the same time as a stent placement by a cardiologist), or even as a staged Hybrid (meaning a Robot Assisted CABG and the stent placement are done at different times). For more information on Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG), contact the Bethencourt Group in Fountain Valley, CA at (657) 241-9440.

Minimally Invasive Surgery Vs. Open

Traditional coronary bypass surgery involved splitting the sternum, resulting in a large scar and a lengthy recovery time. Since 1995 patients needing coronary bypass procedures involving one or two vein graphs could elect to undergo a minimally invasive direct coronary artery bypass (MIDCAB) procedure in lieu of traditional surgery. Using smaller incisions MIDCAB procedures produce less trauma, less pain and faster recovery.

With the advent of minimally-invasive robotic surgery, however, a new approach to coronary bypass and MIDCAB became available to patients who needed only one vein graph. Robotic surgeons can now accomplish a single graph of the left internal mammary artery to left anterior descending artery using the da Vinci® Surgical System. The superior viewing system and wristed instruments of da Vinci® allow the surgeon to operate with greater precision resulting in less complication and potentially better outcomes than conventional MIDCAB.

There are times when the damage to the heart is so extensive that coronary bypass surgery is the best choice. Considered open heart surgery, during this procedure a blood vessel graft will be used to make a bypass around the blocked artery. This allows the blood to continue flow as it should. Sometimes more than one artery may need to be bypassed during the procedure.

Because this is a very serious surgery, you will need to know what you can do to make your recovery as comfortable as possible. By taking the right steps, you can ensure that you are comfortable during your recovery and that you can recover as quickly as possible. Here are some things you will need to do at home.

Recovering from Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery

The most important thing to remember is that you absolutely must follow your doctor’s orders. This includes the following:

  • Taking the proper medication on the proper schedule
  • Staying in bed for a set amount of time
  • Only taking part in activities allowed for a certain time frame
  • Keeping the wound clean and cared for properly

You will be provided with at-home care instructions. You should to read them carefully and follow them closely.

Wound Care

As mentioned, your doctor will go over the details of caring for the incision as it heals. Some of the things will include the following:

  • Shower every day and clean the wound with mild soap. Do not take a bath or soak the wound.
  • Use approved antiseptic and apply it to the wound regularly, especially after showers.
  • Do not rub, scratch or scrub the incisions in any way.
  • Do not let the incision be exposed to sunlight.

In addition to the regular care of the wound, you will also need to inspect it regularly. You need to look for signs of infection, like redness, swelling, pain, or fever. If you have any signs, you need to call your doctor immediately.

Cardiac Rehab

Once you have recovered enough to begin rehabilitation, Dr. Daniel Bethencourt will most likely order a cardiac rehab program. This program will ease you into regular activity and ensure that your body and your heart are healing as it should. Your cardiac rehab team will ensure that you go through rehabilitation safely. It is absolutely vital that you go to cardiac rehab just as Dr. Bethencourt has ordered.

Schedule a Consultation

If you would like to learn more about the coronary artery bypass procedure, contact our office today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Bethencourt. Please call our office today at (657) 241-9440 to book an appointment.

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