Mini-thoracotomy Bypass Surgery

with the Da Vinci Robotic – Bypass Surgery

The medical condition known as heart disease actually refers to several conditions that can damage the heart and lungs. One of the most common occurs when fats, cholesterol, calcium and other substances build up in the walls of arteries and form something called plaque. When this occurs, arteries become constricted and the heart must work harder to function. Often, plaque loosens and breaks off, forming a clot that blocks blood flow to the heart. This usually causes discomfort in the chest, commonly called angina, and can also result in a heart attack.

When this happens, a surgeon takes blood vessels from other parts of the body and bypasses the clogged artery using coronary revascularization surgery. They may take a blood vessel from the chest, leg or arm and attach it on one side to a healthy artery and on the other to the diseased artery, below the point where it is clogged. Bypass surgery gives blood a new open vessel by which to travel to the heart again.

Traditional bypass surgery requires that the surgeon cut open the sternum (breastplate), open the ribs and often stop the heart, using a heart-lung machine (pump) to keep the blood flowing.

In contrast to this highly invasive procedure, experienced cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Miguel Gomez, founder of International Robotic Surgery Center for the Heart and Chest, performs a state-of-the-art robotic bypass procedure called mini-thoroctomy using the da Vinci surgical system. By making small incisions between the ribs, patients experience less trauma, less pain, and return to their lives more quickly.

da Vinci® Coronary Revascularization: A Less Invasive Procedure

The da Vinci Surgical System, made by Intuitive Surgical, is currently being used for Single-Vessel Small Thoracotomies (SVST) and Multi-Vessel Small Thoracotomies (MVST). Both procedures use the da Vinci robot for the harvesting of the internal mammary artery. Dr. Gomez performed the first Multi-vessel Mini-thoracotomy in Houston.

Another benefit is the ability to use stabilizers to ensure that the heart can function without use of the lung-heart machine, something that has often been cited as being more detrimental to immediate patient post-operative health than anything else. With the ability to both avoid open heart surgery and pump use, da Vinci cardio revascularization has fast become one of the most exciting cardiac surgery innovations available.

If you or someone you love requires coronary revascularization surgery, contact us to learn more about this less invasive cardiothoracic robotic technique.

Learn more about off-pump bypass surgery.