Features January 2008 Issue

Minimally Invasive Follow-Up Surgeries Improve Survival Odds

Smaller incisions and new technological advancements lead the way to safer procedures, including valve repairs and even bypass surgeries.

If you’re a heart patient who has been through one surgery and now needs a second procedure, perhaps an aortic valve repair, this follow-up might find you older—and your heart disease in a more advanced state. However, advances in technology and surgical skill are widening the pool of potential patients who can have a valve repair or replacement done with a minimally invasive approach. Smaller incisions mean less trauma to the body and a faster recovery—two critically important factors in helping provide patients with a long life after a follow-up operation, according to Cleveland Clinic cardiac surgeon Tomislav Mihaljevic, MD.

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