One of the greatest fears of patients that need to open cardiac surgery is a long and painful recovery will follow the surgery. Surgeons are often asked by their patients concerned if their “crack their ribs”. Techniques for minimally invasive heart surgery have dramatically changed the overall experience of recovery. Most patients are really surprised to find out that they are much more comfortable than expected within the first 24 hours after the procedure for minimally invasive cardiac surgery.
To understand what this perception is coming from, you should be familiar with the old traditional way to perform open-heart surgery. Generations of heart surgeons were taught to access the heart through a median incision through the breastbone to get an extensive surgical exposure (median sternotomy). This approach involves the use of an alternating saw precisely divide the breastbone in the midline. At the end of the surgical procedure of breast bone, also known as the breast bone, is held together by stainless steel wires and will heal in four to six weeks in most cases. In order for the bone to heal properly most patients are instructed to limit their physical activity and avoid driving or weight lifting over ten pounds. A variety of symptoms of pain in different locations of the chest or neck are present for at least a month or two.
A much easier alternative is readily available, if the same operations are performed using minimally invasive surgery of the heart. In this case, the preferred approach is a minithoracotomy incision, 2 “between the ribs, often completely hidden in the folds of the skin under the breast. There are many benefits of this surgical incision:
No bone, cut at all. The operation is carried out through the narrow space between the ribs
A healing much more reliable and faster. Soft tissues heal faster than broken bone.
Much less chance of infection. Soft tissues have a better blood supply, of bones and are therefore much more resistant to infections
Excellent pain control because the wound is small and easy to numb up after surgery
Exceptional aesthetic results with a surgical scar barely noticeable. A v-neck, evening gown, open blouse or shirt may be worn without any showing scar
There is no limitation to physical activity other than any every patient is comfortable with because there is no broken bone to worry. Most patients can return to their normal activity level within two to three weeks
If you or a loved one are in need of open heart surgery, invest some time to investigate these options or call a minimally invasive heart surgery estimable to get more detailed information.
Visit us for more information, videos and pictures about techniques for minimally invasive heart surgery Dr. revolutionary Clump.
Edit minimally invasive heart surgery pictures and technical details of these operations. Dr. Clump is the Director of minimally invasive and bloodless heart surgery program Aultman Heart Center. Currently runs a busy practice of cardiothoracic surgery renowned nationwide, where he takes care of many patients from the Cleveland Area and the rest of the country.