With two surgical suites dedicated solely to cardiothoracic surgery, plus 24-hour availability of our open-heart surgical teams, The Richard A. Reif Heart Institute of Doylestown Hospital is ready to perform life-saving heart surgery whenever necessary. The highly experienced cardiothoracic team includes cardiovascular surgeons, physicians, operating room nurses, physician assistants and perfusionists.
Understanding Surgical Procedures
"Open-heart" surgery is the term used for any surgical procedure that involves opening the chest to operate on the heart. When minimally invasive procedures are not appropriate or sufficient to achieve the desired outcomes, The Heart Institute's surgical team is ready with the most advanced open-heart surgical options:
Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG or "bypass surgery")
In bypass surgery, the surgeon uses a blood vessel from the patient's own body to bypass a blockage in one of the arteries supplying the blood to the heart. CABG is the most common type of open-heart surgery.
Off Pump Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (OPCAB)
OPCAB, also called "beating heart" surgery, does not require connecting the patient to a heart-lung machine. OPCAB is used in select patients when only one or two arteries will be bypassed. The surgeon operates without stopping the heart.
Minimally Invasive Heart Valve Repairs
The heart contains four valves that open and close to let the blood flow in only one direction. Sometimes, because of a congenital defect, rheumatic fever, infection or age-related changes, the heart valves don't open or close properly. Defective heart valves can lead to more serious heart disease and compromise a patient's ability to lead a normal, active life.
When heart valves are damaged or defective and need to be corrected, it is better - if at all possible - to repair the valve rather than replace it. That's because a repaired valve lasts longer than a mechanical or biological valve replacement. If the patient is a candidate for minimally invasive heart valve surgery, the benefits are greater still.
Minimally invasive heart valve surgery is much easier on the patient, since it involves less surgical trauma, less risk of infection, a shorter recovery time and less scarring. However, minimally invasive heart surgery demands greater skill from the surgeon and is not available at every medical facility. The Heart Institute of Doylestown Hospital is pleased to be able to offer our patients this advanced surgical option.