Bypass surgery or CABG (Coronary artery bypass grafting) is done to restore the blood flow in the blocked arteries by creating a bypass to the heart using arteries from other parts of the body. But, this does not mean that the patient is free from coronary heart disease. The coronary heart disease or atherosclerosis progress does not stop and the fatty material does continue to deposit on the artery walls thus turning them narrow and reducing blood flow to other sites as well.
Hence, the patient has to take help of the healthcare provider after surgery to work on the factors that lead to coronary heart disease progress and treat the existing one. The following treatments can help you cope up with the surgery and lead a healthy life post surgery.
Usually the patient is discharged post 5 days of surgery but in case of complications they patient may have to stay longer. The patient and family members are made to understand about the medications, doses, diet and rehabilitation plan. The medications are designed to improve survival rate, decrease the risk of complications and also treat the chest pain if it reoccurs. The medications include Beta blockers, Nitrates as well as ACE inhibitors and are given based on patient’s condition. A therapy called lipid lowering therapy is generally given to all patients after CABG and is recommended to patients with normal lip levels as well. The most common medications used for lowering cholesterol levels are called Statins.
Wound Healing – The patient is given instruction around taking care of the wound before he or she is discharged from the hospital. It is very important the patient adheres to these instruction else complications could arise. The patient needs to avoid lifting heavy objects, bending or driving entirely besides fast shoulder movements like golf or tennis for atleast 6 to 8 weeks.
Alarms – If the patient develops any of the following symptoms within 14 days of the surgery, seek immediate medical assistance.
- Rapid heart beats
- Reddened skin, bleeding or Pus like discharge from incision
- Fever more than 100.4 degree F
Many hospitals have rehabilitation programs designed for people who have undergone rehabilitation. They are comprehensive and well-structured and include components of health care like stress, anxiety and depression healing, reducing risk factors and exercise.
Exercise – The intensity and period of exercises varies from patient to patient and the coronary heart disease condition as well. Initially the exercises are less and eventually they are increased. The exercise plan is devised after considering heart health, fitness level of the patient, supervised or not, limitations and more. It can start from 5 minutes a day for five days a week and go on to 20 minutes over a period of time, which includes warmup, exercise and cooling down. The cooling down phase is important as avoiding it may increase the risk of complications related to the heart.
Cardiac Risk Factors management
Healthy Diet – A dietician usually prepares a chart that needs to be followed by the patient in order to lose weight as well as reduce cholesterol levels.
Go addiction free – Addictions like smoking or alcohol can be too harmful and hence should be stopped completely in order to reduce the risk of heart attack.
Diabetes Management – People with diabetes are at higher risk of getting complications after surgery. Hence, it is vital to control blood sugar levels. This can be achieved by maintaining a healthy life style, keeping blood sugar under control, besides diabetes medication orally or insulin as prescribed.
Psychological Treatment – After bypass the patient can feel depressed, anxious and stressed. Its more common in women who undergo CABG at a young age.
Follow Ups– The doctor will tell you about the hospital visits after the surgery. Following the routine of visits set by the doctor will help you avoid any kind of recurrence of heart problems. As health improves the visits may decrease and there could be a change in the health plan.
*Sourced from the Internet