Bypass Surgery Explained (Heart Health)
A coronary artery bypass graft operation, also known as “bypass surgery,” uses a piece of vein taken from the leg, or a piece of artery taken from the chest or wrist. This is attached to the heart artery above and below the narrowed area, thus making a bypass around the blockage. Sometimes, patients require more than one bypass.
Bypass surgery may be necessary for several reasons. If you had an angioplasty that did not sufficiently widen the blood vessel, or a blockage that could not be reached, or was too long or hard for angioplasty, your doctor might choose bypass surgery. In certain cases, bypass surgery may simply be a better option. For instance, it may be used when a patient has both coronary heart disease and diabetes. In some cases, the bypass closes. This happens in more than 10 percent of bypass surgeries, usually after 10 or more years.