The heart is an amazing muscular tissue that helps your organs to function properly providing them with the exact quantity of blood and oxygen they need in order to work well. But sometimes a disease or injury weakens your heart, and it needs to be fixed or replaced to work normally once again.When lifestyle changes or other treatments such as medicines do not work or cannot be used, heart surgery might be an option. Let’s review some things you should know about heart surgery.
There are two different kind of surgeries used to “fix” the heart: minimally invasive surgery and open-heart surgery. Both can provide you with great results in the end, however, there are differences between them since they are used for different things (to know more you can review our article: Minimally Invasive vs. Open Heart Surgery Pros & Cons).
Cardiac surgery may be used to correct different coronary problems, such as:
- Fixing the heart valves,
- Control the abnormal heartbeats,
- Treating a heart failure or any coronary heart disease,
- To replace your heart with a healthy one.
Things you should to know BEFORE choosing Heart Surgery:
- Be INFORMED about your options and what is going to happen during the procedure.
- Look for a Second Opinion BEFORE deciding to undergo surgery.
- ASK about your anesthesia options; depending on the type of anesthesia, it can be taken by injection, IV, or inhaled.
- LIMIT alcohol intake, stop smoking and eat healthier before the surgery.
Recommendations After Heart Surgery
- Be PREPARED for the scars; you will wake up with an incision in your chest or with many small incisions depending on the chosen procedure.
- You’ll need to be extra cautious and clean in order to avoid infections.
- Take the medications and do exactly as your doctor instructs.
- Don’t be afraid if you experience few troubles sleeping, mood changes or a possible decline in memory, talk to your doctor about this.
- Your activity will be limited during the first few weeks; you won’t be able to drive or move too much, so ask for your family’s help once you’re at home.
- Maintain a healthy diet rich in fresh fruits, vegetables and proteins.
Remember that in order to decrease your anxiety levels before the surgery you must ask your doctor a LOT of questions, this will help you make sure you’re in the hands of a skilled cardiac surgeon and you’ll feel safer.
Heart surgery can be scary at first, but remember that it is also necessary to improve your quality of life!
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