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Types of Cardiac Surgeries and Treatments

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Types of Cardiac Surgeries and Treatments

Heart surgery is a surgery performed to correct several heart problems. Heart surgery can be done for both children and adults. It will be an option when all other treatments including lifestyle changes, medications and medical procedures failed to provide enough relief.

Heart surgery is performed to treat several heart problems such as

  • Treat heart failure and coronary heart disease (CHD)
  • Fix heart valves that don’t work well
  • Control abnormal heart rhythms
  • Place medical devices
  • Replace a damaged heart with a healthy one

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Types of cardiac surgeries:

The following are the several types of cardiac surgeries performed to treat the different heart conditions.

Artificial Heart Valve Surgery

Artificial Heart Valve Surgery also known as Heart Valve Replacement Surgery is a surgery done to repair or replace diseased heart valves.

Why it’s done?

  • Restores function of the heart valves

How it’s done?

During Artificial Heart Valve Surgery, your surgeon removes an abnormal or diseased heart valve and replaces it with a healthy one. It is usually performed under general anaesthesia with either conventional or minimally invasive techniques. You will be placed on a bypass machine that keeps your blood circulating and lungs functioning as usual.

Bypass Surgery

Bypass surgery or coronary artery bypass surgery is a major cardiac surgery performed to remove the damaged arteries and replaces it for proper supply of blood to your heart muscle. Your surgeon collects the blood vessels from the other body areas to repair the damaged arteries.

Why it’s done?

  • Manage blockage of blood to the heart muscle
  • Improve the oxygen-rich blood supply to the heart
  • Relieves chest pain (angina)
  • Reduces risk of heart attack.
  • Improves the ability for physical activity

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How it’s done?

During this surgery, a long incision is made in the chest with a heart-lung machine that keeps the blood flow and oxygen supply as usual. Your surgeon cuts the chest along with the breast bone and opens the rib cage to expose the heart.

At this stage, your heart will be temporarily stopped using medications. Your surgeon then collects the section of blood vessels from your chest wall or lower legs and attaches the ends above and below the blocked artery. With this, your blood flow is redirected to the narrowed part of a diseased artery.

Heart Transplant

Heart Transplant is a surgical operation in which a diseased heart is replaced with a healthier, donor heart. It will be the only option for heart failure patients and is usually recommended when all other treatments fail to provide enough relief.

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Why it’s done?

  • Restore heart health in appropriately selected patients

How it’s done?

A heart transplant is performed under general anaesthesia with a heart-lung machine connected to your body to keep regular blood flow and oxygen supply. An incision is made in your chest along with the breastbone and is separated to access your heart. Then, your heart is removed leaving the section to replace a new heart behind two upper chambers of the heart.

Your new heart will be connected to the aorta, the pulmonary artery and the remaining part of the atria. Once your heart starts beating, your breastbone will be closed with metal wires and muscles or tissues with stitches.

Aortic Aneurysm Surgery

An aneurysm is the swelling and widening of the walls of blood vessels especially arteries that causes them to weaken over time and they can rupture. Aorta is the main artery supplying blood from the heart to the rest of the body. Aneurysms are most commonly found in the aorta within the abdominal region below the kidneys. There are different types of surgery to repair aortic aneurysms:

Open Aortic Aneurysm Repair

Open Aortic Aneurysm Repair is the most common surgery done to repair an aortic aneurysm. However, it is the most invasive surgery in which your surgeon replaces the weakened section of your aorta using a tube or graft made up of a special fabric.

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How it’s done?

  • You will be given anaesthesia and an incision (cut) is made in the skin and tissue to operate directly on the aorta through the incision.
  • Two clamps will be placed on the aorta, above and below the aneurysm in order to keep blood from flowing through the surgery area
  • Then your surgeon may sew a device called graft at the aneurysm site so that these grafts act as walls of a healthy aorta so as to keep blood from flowing through the whole aorta with no risk of bursting.
  • Once the graft is placed, your doctor takes off the clamps and watches until the blood flows well through the aorta again.
  • After that, your incision will be closed and you will be sent to the recovery room to wake up from surgery.

Thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR)

Thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR) is a surgical procedure done to treat an aneurysm in the upper part of your aorta. It is recommended when the aneurysm has a diameter of over 5.5 cm or expanded by over 0.5 mm within 6 months.

How it’s done?

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  • You will be given general anaesthesia which makes you sleep through the procedure and to numb a certain part of your body so that you won’t feel any pain.
  • During the procedure, your surgeon looks for the signs, heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Then, he will make a small incision in the groin area and arm to insert an aortic A thin tube (catheter) called a sheath with a catheter attached to it. A stent graft is a thin metal mesh tube covered with a thin polyester fabric (the graft). It is collapsed so that it becomes narrow and fit through your blood vessels.
  • Now your surgeon will thread the catheter with a stent attached to it into the groin to the affected part of your aorta through an artery.
  • Once the stent is placed, your surgeon may expand the metal frame like a spring and attaches tightly to the wall of your aorta and fasten it into place for blood to flow. It prevents the aneurysm from bursting and makes it shrink over time.
  • Your surgeon will then takes off the catheter and closes the incision and places a small bandage on the wound.

Ascending Aortic Aneurysm:

Ascending aortic aneurysm is an abnormal bulging and weakening of your aorta closest to the heart. It begins at the heart’s left ventricle and extends to the aortic arch that gives off branches to the head and arms. These type of aneurysms are the second most common aortic aneurysms found in people in their 60s and 70s.

Surgical Repair of an Ascending Aortic Aneurysm

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  • You will be given general anaesthesia so that you feel no pain.
  • Your surgeon will make an incision to reach your heart and aorta through your chest wall.
  • You will be placed on the heart-lung machine which takes over the function of your heart and lungs during the surgery.
  • Your surgeon will then remove a bulging area and implants a graft in its place. In some instances, your unhealthy aortic valve will be replaced with an artificial valve.
  • Once all the repairs are done, you will have normal blood flow through your heart and aorta.
  • Your surgeon will then close the incisions made and you may have temporary pacemaker wires coming from the skin with the drainage tubes in order to drain the blood.

Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysm (TAA)

Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysm is the aneurysm that occurs both in the chest area as well as in the abdomen. It occurs frequently in males over 60 years because of weakness in the wall of the artery. It exhibits no symptoms and is incidentally diagnosed during other tests such as an x-ray.

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Treatment for TAA

The treatment of Thoracoabdominal Aortic Aneurysm depends on the size of the aneurysm and its symptoms. Surgery is needed if the size of the aneurysm is larger than 5.5 inches. There are different types of surgery to repair Thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysms, including:

  • Open thoracoabdominal aortic repair
  • Endovascular treatment


In order to fix different cardiac problems of a patient, medical science today has come up with various cardiac surgeries. However, it is up to the medical surgeon who diagnoses your heart problem carefully to decide which cardiac surgical procedure best suits you and then carry out the appropriate Heart surgery.

About Sunshine Hospitals:

Sunshine Hospitals, Bhubaneswar is an ultramodern 125-bed, tertiary care hospital located in the heart of Bhubaneswar. Established in the year 2015 with a mission to provide quality healthcare services to the people of Odisha. Sunshine’s patient-first approach steers it steadily in the direction of ensuring that state-of-the-art technology meets state-of-the –heart services to produce positive patient outcomes.

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