Acquired Heart Disease

Valley Cardiac Surgery offers a full range of surgical options for patients with acquired heart disease. We perform minimally invasive bypass and valve replacement procedures, repairs of septal defects, automatic implantable cardioverter defibrillators (AICD), and more.

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What is Acquired Heart Disease?

Acquired heart disease is the most common form of heart disease. It develops later in life due to blockages in blood vessels and arteries, a weakened heart muscle, or irregular heart rhythms. Acquired heart disease is the most prevalent cause of death in the United States.

Types of Acquired Heart Disease

Coronary Artery Disease

Coronary artery disease is a result of the narrowing, or blockage of the blood vessels that deliver blood to and from the heart. If these vessels become narrow or blocked to the point where blood flow is stopped, it can cause a heart attack. Coronary artery disease is most often caused by smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

Congestive Heart Failure

Congestive heart failure occurs when the heart fails to pump at normal levels. Abnormal heart valves or a weakened heart muscle are the two most common causes of congestive heart failure. Narrowing of the valves, or holes in the valves can cause the heart muscle to perform more rigorously, resulting in a congestive heart failure.

Irregular Heart Beat

A disruption in the electrical activity of the heart can cause heartbeats that are either too fast or too slow. Severely irregular heartbeats can cause the heart to stop pumping blood altogether.

Surgical Options

Valley Cardiac Surgery offers a full range of surgical options to treat acquired heart disease, including:

  • Coronary artery bypass — A common technique used to prevent heart attacks, a coronary artery bypass involves grafting arteries and veins from other parts of the body to the coronary artery to bypass blockages or narrowing and improve blood supply to the heart.
  • “Off Pump” Coronary Bypass — Also known as “beating heart” bypass, unlike most bypass surgeries that involve a heart-lung machine, the surgeon performs the procedure while the patient’s heart is still beating. This technique has shown to reduce the risk of complications in certain patients.
  • Minimally Invasive Bypass and Mitral Valve Replacement — Some patients may be candidates for a minimally invasive procedure that replaces traditional “open” surgeries that require major incisions and lengthy recovery times. Using one or more small incisions, surgeons can perform bypasses and valve replacements through the use of small scopes that can be run through the veins of the body into the heart. Minimally invasive surgery has shown to be just as effective as traditional surgery, with added benefits such as a shorter hospital stay, faster recovery times, less bleeding, a lower infection rate, and less cost.
  • Aortic Valve, Mitral Valve and Tricuspid Valve Repair and Replacement — Defective heart valves can often be repaired through various techniques to help the valve open and close properly. In some cases, valve replacement is necessary when the diseased valve is beyond repair. This procedure involves replacing the defective valve with a prosthetic valve specially sized to fit the patient.   Aortic Valve,   Mitral Valve Repair,   Mitral Valve Replacement,   Mitral Valve Repair or Replacement for regurgitation-or-prolapse,  Tricuspid Valve Repair,  Tricuspid Valve Replacement
  • Repair Atrial and Ventricular Septal Defects — A septal defect is a hole in the wall (septum) of the heart that separates the heart’s chambers. This causes blood to flow backwards through the heart, creating inefficient blood flow throughout the body. Through a traditional or minimally invasive procedure, surgeons can repair the hole using stitches or a mesh fabric patch. Eventually, heart tissue grows around the stitches or the patch.   Atrial Septal Defect,   Ventricular Septal Defects
  • Reconstruction of Thoracic Aorta, including Aneurysms and Aortic Dissections — The thoracic aorta is the largest artery in the body. Aneurysms can form within the vessel, and if left untreated, could rupture, causing a life-threatening emergency. When a large aneurysm is detected, it can be surgically replaced via a plastic or fabric graft.   Aortic SurgeryThoracic Aortic AneurysmsReconstruction of Thoracic Aortic Dissections                              
  • Automatic Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (AICD) — An AICD can be implanted to correct irregular heartbeats by delivering a jolt of electricity to the heart when arrhythmia is detected. Unlike pacemakers, AICDs are often permanently implanted in the body to safeguard against life-threatening irregular heartbeats.