Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is a surgical procedure to bypass (go around) blocked coronary (heart) arteries to restore normal blood flow to the heart muscle. It is commonly known as a heart bypass.
In a CABG, doctors will use healthy blood vessels from another part of your body, such as leg veins or internal mammary (breast) arteries, and sew them around the blocked artery. This creates an alternate path for oxygen-rich blood to bypass the blocked part of the coronary artery and restore normal blood flow to the heart.
Types of CABG surgery
There are 2 types of CABG procedures:
This procedure uses a heart-lung bypass machine to take over the functions of your heart and lungs. The machine allows your surgeon to operate on a still heart.
This procedure stabilises parts of your heart instead of stopping your heart completely. Stabilising parts of your heart allows your surgeon to operate on the stabilised section while allowing the rest of the heart to beat and function normally.
Off-pump CABG can be done as a minimally invasive direct coronary artery bypass (MIDCAB) procedure, where small incisions are made to insert surgical instruments and operate using a video feed. MIDCAB is usually done when the arteries in front of the heart are blocked.
Why do you need CABG?
Your doctor may recommend coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) if you have severe coronary artery disease (CAD). In severe CAD, plaque build-up in heart arteries can restrict blood flow to heart muscles and lead to a heart attack.
CABG creates a new pathway around these blockages to allow blood to flow normally to the heart. This reduces symptoms of coronary heart disease such as chest pain and lowers your risk of a heart attack.
What are the risks and complications of CABG?
The risk of complications from coronary artery bypass grafting generally depends on your overall health and may include:
You will remain in the intensive care unit (ICU) for 1 – 2 days of observation. Most patients can leave the hospital in a week.
As it will be several weeks before you can resume normal activity, it is best to make arrangements in advance for transport, housekeeping and meals.
It takes around 2 months to fully recover from the surgery.
Why choose Gleneagles Hospital?
At Gleneagles, your recovery is our priority. Established in Singapore for more than 60 years, we offer a comprehensive heart and vascular programme through our team of cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons.
Our team provide a range of therapies for heart conditions, including coronary artery bypass grafting to treat blocked heart arteries. Recover in extensive, modern facilities and experience seamless care all under one roof.
At Gleneagles, we offer a comprehensive heart and vascular programme through our team of heart specialists and heart surgeons. We will treat your heart condition holistically with expert help from our specialists.