In 1953, DNA was discovered, and Mount Everest was conquered. And this year, a great invention was used for the first time, namely a heart-lung machine (also known as a cardiopulmonary bypass machine). On May 6, 1953, John Gibbon successfully completed his life's work by becoming the first person in the world to close an atrial septal defect in a young woman using a heart-lung machine of his own invention. Seven decades later, other devices are used, but the treatment principles remain the same: as long as the device connected to the patient’s blood circulation ensures the movement of blood to organs and tissues, surgeons can perform all the manipulations necessary for recovery on his heart.
- What is a heart-lung machine?
- What conditions can be treated with the use of a heart-lung machine?
Surgical procedures are performed through an open approach, although they can sometimes be performed thoracoscopically using robot-assisted surgical techniques.
You can seek medical attention at the University Hospital Essen, the University Hospital Oldenburg, or the University Hospital Ulm.
Do not hesitate to use the services of the Booking Health company. We will take care of all the arrangements for your trip abroad. Our employees will help you choose a hospital and a doctor. They will also book hotel and airline tickets, meet you at the airport abroad, and take you to the hospital by car.
What is a heart-lung machine?
A heart-lung machine is a device that replaces the functions of the heart and lungs for the duration of the operation. This system contains both mechanical and physiological units.
The mechanical unit includes pumps and electronic control systems for its operation. The physiological unit includes an extracorporeal circuit, the main unit of which is an oxygenator that replaces lung function. It oxygenates the blood and removes carbon dioxide. Cardiosurgery departments abroad use membrane oxygenators, which almost do not injure blood cells and proteins and ensure optimal gas exchange.
During surgical treatment with the heart-lung machine, the device is connected to the patient's circulatory system in various ways, depending on the type of surgery. Cardiopulmonary bypass machines are most commonly connected to the superior vena cava, inferior vena cava, and aorta. But if the opening of the heart is not planned (for example, in the case of coronary artery bypass grafting), only a venous catheter can be connected. During operations on the aorta, heart-lung machines are often connected through the femoral artery.
What conditions can be treated with the use of a heart-lung machine?
Cardiosurgery doctors can treat many diseases with the use of heart-lung machines, including:
- congenital heart defects;
- coronary artery disease (CAD);
- acquired heart defects;
- hypertrophic cardiomyopathy;
- left ventricular aneurysms.
Most heart operations are performed for heart defects and coronary heart disease.
Surgical procedures with the use of cardiopulmonary bypass machines are open operations performed with the opening of the chest. The recovery time for patients after such operations is several months.
You can undergo your cardiac surgery abroad to get good results and reduce the risk of complications. The Booking Health website lists the best hospitals with cardiosurgery departments. On our website, you can see the surgical treatment cost depending on the type of operation, compare prices at different clinics, and choose a medical care program at a favorable price. Our specialists will help you choose the most suitable clinic with a high success rate of operations.
The article was edited by medical experts, board-certified doctors Dr. Nadezhda Ivanisova and Dr. Vadim Zhiliuk. For the treatment of the conditions referred to in the article, you must consult a doctor; the information in the article is not intended for self-medication!
ECR - European Cardiology Review
American College of Cardiology