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ON OR OFF PUMP

ANCHOR LEAD: ARE THERE ANY ADVANTAGES TO AVOIDING A HEART LUNG MACHINE?  ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Should heart bypass surgery be done by stopping the heart and using a heart lung machine to circulate blood, or should the heart be kept beating?  The latest study concludes that five years later, an early advantage to so called off pump surgery doesn’t persist.  Rick Lange, chief of clinical cardiology at Johns Hopkins, comments.

LANGE:  The thought was if we could prevent the heart lung machine from being used we could actually decrease the cognitive deficits.  Well, initial studies showed two things.  One is that when you did off pump surgery the grafts were not as likely to open one or two months later.  It’s just technically more difficult to sew on a heart that’s pumping while you’re trying to do the sewing.  Secondly it appears that early on, in the first two or three months there was less cognitive deficits when the surgery was performed off pump but when one looks at six month and one year, and now the most recent study at five years, there really is no benefit at all.                      :32

So choose an experienced surgeon and center to improve your odds of the best outcome from surgery.  I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.

 


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