When the coronary arteries are blocked, blood flow that supplies oxygen and nutrients to the heart becomes limited. This often leads to coronary heart disease. Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting is a procedure that re-routes the blood flow to the heart. Also called CABG, this surgery treats blocked or narrowed arteries by bypassing the blocked area and creating a new pathway to the heart.
Coronary artery bypass graft surgery removes or redirects a blood vessel, also called a graft, from one part of the body (typically the leg, chest, or arm) and places one end at the top of the blockage and the other end below it to bypass the blockage and redirect the blood to the heart.
Typically coronary artery bypass graft surgery is an open heart surgery procedure; the chest is opened and the breastbone is cut to expose the heart. The heart is stopped during the bypass and tubes are inserted to the heart so blood can be artificially pumped through the heart via a bypass machine to allow the surgeon to perform the operation.
Coronary artery bypass grafting surgery is usually performed on patients with heart disease such as coronary artery disease and angina pectoris.