Hi, I'm 57 yr old, male, I have bypass surgery scheduled for the next Friday. As it was shown in catheterization results, I have one artery fully blocked and the other one is 30-40% blocked, The heart is fed through three vessels from that other artery. My doctor told me that stent is impractical in my case and advised me for bypass surgery. He also told me that it's not "a question of life and death", but rather "of quality of life", that I will be able to lift weights, etc. But now, I'm pretty satisfied with my current QOL, I breath freely, can walk, even do light to medium-hard exercise. After the pre-admission debriefing I had this Friday, I'm starting to have second thoughts. If it's not a life/death question and with possibility of all those post surgery side effects, incl. liver failure (20%) or stroke (20%), do I really need to have this surgery right now? Aren't the risks too much in comparison with the results (higher QOL)?
Your cardiologist will have looked at your prospects with medication alone and other options for intervention before recommending a bypass. I am surprised that you have so few symptoms which makes me wonder if you have other underlying issues. With regards to risk, your cardiologist will work out a risk factor which is unique for you as a patient, given your current problems. Have you had strokes before? Such a high risk is normally associated with people who have previously suffered a stroke. A 1 in 5 risk for stroke does seem a bit high. I have to admit I would be thinking twice with a risk that high, especially if you don't have severe symptoms.
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