What are the risks associated

What are the risks associated with Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting?

While complications from coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) are rare, they can include:

  1. Wound infection and bleeding
  2. Reactions to anesthesia
  3. Fever and pain
  4. Stroke, heart attack, or even death

Some patients may experience post-operative fever accompanied by chest pain, irritability, and reduced appetite, which can be attributed to inflammation involving the lung and heart sac. This reaction typically occurs 1 to 6 weeks after surgeries involving the pericardium, the heart’s outer covering. While usually mild, some patients may develop fluid buildup around the heart requiring treatment.

Memory loss and cognitive changes, such as difficulty concentrating or thinking clearly, may occur in certain individuals. These changes are more prevalent in older patients, those with high blood pressure, lung disease, or excessive alcohol consumption. However, these side effects often improve within months after surgery.

The use of a heart-lung bypass machine during CABG increases the risk of blood clot formation in blood vessels, potentially leading to strokes or other complications. Recent advancements in heart-lung bypass technology aim to mitigate this risk by reducing clot formation.

Generally, the likelihood of complications is higher in emergency CABG procedures, in patients over 70 years old, or in those with a history of smoking. Additionally, individuals with comorbidities such as diabetes, kidney disease, lung disease, or peripheral arterial disease are at increased risk.