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Why do you need bypass surgery?

If you are suffering chest pain or other symptoms that may indicate a cardiovascular problem, your doctor will likely ask you to undergo an angiogram (cardiac catheterization) to see if your coronary arteries are blocked by plaque. A blockage can cause a decrease in the supply of blood and oxygen to the heart, and over time can lead to chest pain or a heart attack.

Coronary Artery Disease:
Coronary artery disease (CAD) happens when plaque builds up in the coronary arteries, hampering blood flow to the heart muscle. The most common symptoms are chest pain (angina), breathlessness or even unusual fatigue.
Coronary artery disease predisposes people to develop a heart attack and is also the most common cause of heart failure. CAD can block one or more coronary arteries. The block may be limited to a small segment of the artery or may be more widespread.
There are several effective treatments for CAD, which can reduce chest pain, make a heart attack less likely, and may prolong life. Your Cardiologist and Cardiac Surgeon will give the option that is best for you. Here is what each option involves.

Bypass Surgery:
Bypass surgery is most often recommended for patients with blockages in multiple blood vessels or for patients with a blockage in their heart's left main coronary artery, which supplies most of the blood flow to the heart's lower left chamber or the left ventricle. Also all arterial off pump Bypass is preferred in younger patients and patients with widespread disease.
In bypass surgery, surgeon takes a blood vessel from your leg, forearm, or chest and creates an alternate route around the blockage or blockages. This is similar to creating a new road around a bad stretch of road so as to prevent any further traffic jams.

Angioplasty and Stents:
This procedure is somewhat similar to angiogram where doctors guide a tube through an artery in your arm or groin to reach your blocked coronary artery. When the tube, which is very long but only slightly wider than a pencil lead, reaches the artery, a tiny balloon at the end is inflated to reopen the blood vessel.
This is similar to fixing only the worst part of a bad road to help ease traffic jams. This is useful in a select group of patients only.