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Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Surgery (CABG)

Coronary artery bypass grafting is a treatment option for ischemic heart disease which is when there is too little blood getting to the heart muscle.  CABG surgery is recommended for :

  • Blockage of the left main coronary artery
  • Disease of three or more vessels
  • Case in which non-surgical management has failed ( medical management or stenting)

The coronary arteries are small blood vessels the supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood.  Cholesterol plaques can develop in the coronary arteries causing them to be blocked.  This blockage is called atherosclerosis or coronary artery disease.  When the heart muscle does not get enough oxygenated blood it is called ischemic heart disease.   Ischemic heart disease can cause chest pain (angina).  Heart bypass surgery creates a “bypass” around the blockage in the coronary artery to restore the blood supply to the heart muscle.    The surgery is called Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG) surgery ( commonly referred to as cabbage surgery).
The common vessels used for bypassing around the blockages are the internal mammary artery and saphenous vein.  The internal mammary artery (also called internal thoracic) is located inside the chest below the ribs in the front of the chest.  The saphenous veins are located in the legs.

There is a video link to help better explain the procedure