Coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG surgery) is a procedure for coronary artery disease treatment. Coronary artery disease is a condition where fatty material builds up on the interior of the coronary arteries, limiting the supply of oxygen-rich blood to the heart. CABG surgery uses blood vessels taken from veins in the leg or an artery in the chest to create a graft that bypasses the blocked portion of the coronary artery. After the graft is attached during CABG surgery, blood can flow around the blockage to reach the heart more easily.
CABG surgery is typically an open heart procedure, where the chest is opened and the heart stopped for a period of time, allowing surgeons to perform the bypass. In some cases, the heart may be connected to a cardiopulmonary bypass machine that pumps blood while the heart stopped. New minimally-invasive procedures have been developed that allow surgeons to perform CABG surgery without stopping the heart or opening the chest cavity.
Patients needing CABG surgery or other coronary disease treatment will find the most advanced care and innovative treatment options at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston (BWH).
Minimally-invasive CABG surgery. As one of the top hospitals for cardiovascular care in the country, BWH offers world-class care and CABG surgery in the Carl J and Ruth Shapiro Cardiovascular Center. Equipped with the latest technology and outfitted with spaces tailored to the needs of cardiovascular patients and their families, the Center provides comprehensive care for patients requiring coronary disease surgery, vascular surgery and other procedures. Each patient at the Center receives care from a treatment team that may include physicians and nurses, as well as specialists in cardiology, imaging, vascular surgery and other fields.
Cardiac surgeons at the center perform more than 1,100 CABG surgeries each year. Many of these are minimally-invasive surgeries such as key-hole surgery and robotic surgery, which use smaller incisions and do not require the heart to be stopped. While not all patients are eligible for minimally-invasive CABG procedures, patients that do undergo these surgeries typically experience reduced pain and scarring and can recover more quickly.