Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery (CABG), pronounced 'cabbage,' or bypass surgery is a surgical treatment for blocked coronary (heart) arteries. The surgery involves using a section of a vein from the leg, or arteries from the chest to bypass a diseased section of a coronary artery. The healthy new vein or artery creates a new route for blood to flow to the heart muscle giving it oxygen-rich blood.
During bypass surgery, the chest is opened (referred to as open-chest surgery) and the heart is stopped allowing the surgeons to perform the bypass on the heart. While the surgeons work, the patient is placed on a heart-lung machine. This machine temporarily sustains life as it circulates the vital blood and oxygen to all parts of the body.
Surgeons may perform a single bypass, double bypass, triple bypass or quadruple bypass depending on the number of blocked coronary arteries.
After surgery at INTEGRIS Heart Hospital, patients will go to an intensive coronary care unit and then be moved to an intermediate unit. Before discharge, the patient will learn about medication regimens, diet, wound care, and activity instructions. As part of their on-going care, patients may be directed to participate in cardiac rehab programs through the YMCA Health Living Center - INTEGRIS.