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British Heart Foundation
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Waiting on bypass surgery very anxious

Hi I was diagnosed with heart disease and need triple bypass. Most worrying thing is that due to varicose veins in both legs I have been referred to professor al attar at Goode jubilee Glasgow as he specialises on bypass surgery not using leg veins. As I understand it he will rewire mammary veins. My worry is that during visit in clinic he said that means there is no back up plan!! Frightened the wits of me. I expressed my fears to cardiac nurse who said not to worry they will get a vein from somewhere else. Anyone been in this situation? Would love to hear positive outcomes.

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Hi there, I had a double bypass 5 months ago today and the cardiologist used both of my mammary arteries as I had both legs stripped of varicose veins many years ago. I wasn't made aware of a lack of any 'back up plan' by him but a couple months ago I said it to my husband as it suddenly came to mind and yes, I did feel a sense of panic. I plan to discuss this with my cardiac rehab team, however, I'm not going to dwell on it as I'm recovering as I should and enjoying the days when I'm feeling able to do a little bit more than before. Doing my best in keeping a positive outlook and being grateful for the breath of life.

Discuss your concerns with your cardiologist, and as you say the nurse told you they will get a vein from somewhere, but hopefully you will never need that to happen.

Sending you hugs.

Kind regards,

Sandra

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Hi thanks for your quick response and great to hear you are recovering well. I feel I have to trust the surgeon and assume that they would not consider such a procedure if there was not a reasonable chance of success. I will express my concerns again at the next opportunity and thanks again for your kind words.

Barb

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They can also take veins from the arms. In fact I have been told this will apply to me.

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Thanks for your response good to know

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I had quadruple bypass surgery and it felt the same as a normal bypass surgery.

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Hi thanks for your response. Did you have quadruple bypass using mammary veins or arm veins?

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Hi .I had one out of my leg but also they took one out of my arm .a lot depends on your surgeon hope it all goes well for you

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Hi thanks for your response. The surgeon I have is a specialist in his field so I guess I will just have to trust him in the end and hope for the best

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Hi,

I had bypass surgery - was supposed to be a single or double, but ended up having a quadruple. They used the veins in my chest (mammary artery) as well as veins from 1 leg and arm. I believe they could have used two arms instead :-).

I can tell you I was very worried before my surgery, but all my fears turned to nothing as I was out of hospital 6 days later and have been making a good recovery. I hope the same happens for you.

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Hi oh thats really good to hear and great you are making good recovery. I have been sent an app for chest/abdomen ct scan which I presume surgeon is doing in order to check veins in that area. I should be grateful he is being thorough in his preparation.......its just so scary !!!

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In fact it's better to use arteries rather than leg veins - they last longer, which is why they are used for blockages in the most important coronary arteries. You have 2 mammary arteries he can use, and he can also use a radial artery from your arm, as mentioned above. So don't worry - it means you will get a gold standard bypass from a top surgeon!

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Hi there thank you for your reassuring response , trying to think positive and hoping for a good outcome

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