Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery
What To Think About
When bypass surgery is clearly needed, surgery improves symptoms and in some cases prolongs life. But in many situations, the reasons for doing bypass surgery instead of other treatments are less clear.
In each case, the cardiac surgeon or cardiologist should be able to clearly explain why bypass surgery is preferred over medicine or angioplasty. Sometimes, a second opinion can be helpful when it is not clear that surgery needs to be done.
Transmyocardial laser revascularization (TMR) is sometimes used along with bypass surgery. TMR uses a laser beam to improve blood flow to the heart and relieve angina. It is not common but may be done to reach areas of the heart where bypass grafting does not work as well. And it is not the right treatment for everyone.