During surgical bypass, blood flow is rerouted around a blocked blood vessel. Often, a portion of a vein from another area of the body is removed and then reconnected above and below the block. This procedure can be used for vertebral arteries, iliac arteries, renal arteries, the subclavian artery in the shoulder, peripheral blood vessels and the aorta.
Also Known As:
- Heart bypass
- Cardiac surgery
- Surgical bypass for venous disease
- Surgical bypass for arterial disease
Conditions Treated with Surgical Bypass:
Surgical bypass is utilized to treat atherosclerosis, peripheral arterial disease and venous disease.
Non-surgical alternatives to surgical bypass include weight loss, lifestyle changes and cutting out tobacco. Medication can also be used to prevent the progression of atherosclerosis. There are no comparable surgical alternatives to the procedure.
Anesthesia with Surgical Bypass:
Surgical bypass is performed under general anesthesia, which means that the patient is asleep and completely unaware during the procedure.
Potential Complications from Surgical Bypass:
Possible risks following surgical bypass include swelling, infection, bleeding and a negative reaction to the anesthesia. It is also possible to experience blood vessel damage, stroke and a heart attack. Some patients need blood thinners and physical therapy following surgical bypass.
Prognosis after Surgical Bypass:
The prognosis for a positive end result following surgical bypass is good. In fact, most vessel grafts last 10 years or longer.
Recovery from Surgical Bypass:
The total recovery time after surgical bypass is one to five months.