Determining If You Need Heart Surgery

When your physician mentions heart surgery, you may feel your stomach drop or automatically start feeling anxious. Before this happens, the right diagnostic tests will be performed and the doctor will determine if this is the best course of action for dealing with your ailment or issue. Today’s patients undergoing an operation benefit from skilled surgeons as well as the latest technology to ensure that a positive outcome is achieved.

Electrocardiogram (EKG)

An EKG is a diagnostic test that records the activity of the main organ that pumps blood through your body. There is no pain associated with the procedure and it can be done in the cardiologist’s office or at a local medical facility. Aside from checking on the overall health of this vital organ, it can help doctors pinpoint the problem or give them a special area to focus on. This test is always completed before a patient undergoes heart surgery.

Stress Test

While it may sound stressful, the stress test is not meant to cause you any concern. Here, the goal is to get the blood pumping quickly so that the doctor can find out just how this organ responds to the stress of rapid beating. In order to glean the most information from this diagnostic test, an EKG is often done at the same while the patient’s blood pressure is monitored closely. Once again, the information is used to determine whether or not heart surgery is the best option.


A sonogram of this vital organ, also known as an echocardiogram is able to allow doctors and surgeons to see any issues or problems, including the effects of disease. It is not only used to determine if an operation necessary; it is also used after heart surgery to provide a closer look at how the body is healing and whether or not things are functioning correctly.

Regardless of the number of tests available and how much research you do on your own, the best way to find out if you need heart surgery is to consult with a cardiologist. He or she will help you determine if your body is functioning properly and if you need to look to an operation to improve the blood flow throughout your body. While many people believe that only the older generation tends to deal with these types of issues, there are some problems that can happy to any person at any age. It is important to see a doctor if you have any concerns about your body. It is always better to make the appointment and talk to your doctor about your worries and questions.

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Children’s Heart Surgery – Symptoms and Available Treatments

For some children who are born with heart defects, also known as congenital defects, heart surgery immediately after birth or after a few months depending on the severity may be required. Some defects are minor and some are major. The ailment may be directly to the heart or a blood vessel that is outside the heart. In most cases a single surgery can rectify the condition, but depending on the ailment, the specialist at the Children’s Heart Hospital may suggest a series of procedures. Early detection and treatments aided by advance technology has significant improve the life of new born.

Symptoms that you should be looking for:

  • Blue or grey skin – This indicates that the oxygen flow in the blood is not adequate.
  • Difficulty in breathing.
  • Arrhythmias – Heart rate or heart rhythm is not normal.
  • Lack of growth and development in a child or poor feeding and sleeping.

Open Heart Surgery

Among the various Children’s Heart Treatments, open heart surgery is very common. Open heart surgery is when the surgeon uses a heart – lung bypass machine. The child is given general anesthesia which means that he is completely unconscious and does not feel the pain. The surgeon makes an incision through the breast bone. The blood is rerouted using tubes through a special machine called heart – lung bypass machine. This machine also adds oxygen to the blood in order to keep it warm. It also helps the blood to be circulating throughout the body while the surgeon performs the operation. With the machine on, the heart can actually be stopped making the repair of the valves, heart muscles or the arteries outside the heart easy. After it is repaired, the machine is removed and the heart can function as normal.

Heart defects can also be repaired by making an incision on the side of the chest in between the ribs called a tracheotomy also known as closed heart surgery. Special instruments are used along with a camera to perform this kind of surgery.

The third type of treatment is to insert thin tubes into an artery in the leg and pass them up to the heart. But a limited number of defects can be repaired in this way.

Children’s heart hospitals generally have specialists, surgeons, nurses and technicians that are trained for this purpose.

After a surgery, 2 – 3 days of hospital stay may be required for your child’s post surgery care.

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