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Home > Mercy News > Mercy completes first off-pump heart bypass surgery
Published on December 21, 2017
Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids successfully completed an off-pump coronary artery bypass (also called “beating heart”) surgery last week, believed to be the first complex open heart surgical procedure of this type to be completed at a Cedar Rapids hospital.
Off-pump coronary artery bypass surgery does not use a heart-lung machine to stop the heart as in traditional coronary artery bypass surgery. Rather than stopping the heart, technological advances and new types of operating equipment allow the surgeon to stabilize portions of the heart during surgery. With a particular area of the heart stabilized, the surgeon can safely bypass the blocked artery in a highly controlled operative environment. Meanwhile, the rest of the heart keeps beating and circulating blood to the body.
“This type of surgery may be the best option for sicker patients or ones with other health issues,” said Dr. C.C. Lee, director of Mercy’s cardiothoracic and vascular surgery program.
Vincent Risden, 85, of North Liberty, underwent off-pump heart bypass surgery at Mercy on Monday, Dec. 11. Risden said he’s thankful off-pump surgery is available at Mercy because other health issues, including recurring pneumonia, left him unable to undergo traditional open heart surgery to repair his heart blockage.
“I’m pleased to say the off-pump surgery was successful and the patient is doing well and recovering as expected,” said Dr. Lee. “It’s always our desire to offer our patients the latest advances in technology and, of course, to have successful outcomes. Providing the off-pump bypass procedure here at Mercy is a differentiator for us and another way we can offer patients the very best surgical heart care."
Off-pump coronary artery bypass surgery is performed in certain patients with coronary artery disease. With the latest technology, all arteries of the heart can be bypassed off-pump. Certain patients at increased risk for complications from cardiopulmonary bypass, such as those who have heavy amounts of calcification in the aorta or compromised lung or kidney function, may be ideal candidates. The technology allows patients who cannot have traditional bypass surgery to be evaluated for off-pump surgery.