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Patients usually come to the outpatient clinic with symptoms of chest pain. A doctor will assess the patient’s risk factors, such as high cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, high blood sugar, and tobacco use. After a physical examination, additional diagnostic tests are often requested. These tests may include:
The final diagnosis of coronary artery disease is established by cardiac catheterization, also known as cardiac cath or coronary angiogram. To observe blood flow and blood pressure, catheters are inserted into the heart through the wrist or the groin.
Once a diagnosis is confirmed, treatment options are discussed with a multidisciplinary team of doctors, including internal medicine physicians, cardiologists, and surgeons. In many cases, resorbable stents can be implanted into blockages immediately. This procedure is carried out using local anesthetic and patients can usually leave the hospital after one day.
If the disease is complex, or if very important heart vessels are involved, doctors may recommend coronary artery bypass surgery, also known as coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) or heart bypass surgery.
Coronary artery bypass surgery restores normal blood flow to the heart. The blood flow is redirected around the blocked artery in order to reach the heart. The surgery involves taking a vein from the chest or leg and using it to redirect blood from the aorta, the body’s main artery, to the coronary artery.
The traditional way to perform coronary artery bypass surgery is through a midline chest incision. If a patient fulfills certain criteria, noninvasive surgery options, which allow for a quicker recovery, are also offered at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi.
Using robotic technology, coronary artery bypass surgery can be performed using minimally invasive incisions of 8mm to 10mm, without opening the chest. This procedure is called Totally Endoscopic Coronary Artery Bypass, or TECAB. Hybrid procedures combine catheter interventions and robotic surgery to reduce the invasiveness of the operations.
Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi is among the world’s leading hospitals for several minimally invasive procedures, including methods of TECAB and hybrid coronary interventions.
Coronary artery disease care involves a multidisciplinary team working in an integrated, Patients First approach. The Coronary Artery Disease Program works closely with other parts of the hospital, including the catheter laboratory, the operating room, the Intensive Care Unit, and more. Caregivers involved in patient care for this program include: