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open sternum after bypass surgery

my husband hadquad bypass on feb 14 2011 he had it in westchester ny everything went fine 2 months later he had a infection in his sight where they moved the veins had blood poisoning from a abcess he just went for a follow up now they are telling him that his sternum is not closing is it caused by his infection or just his body not healing and what are the options to fix we are on wits end what else can go wrong
2 Responses
1687176 tn?1321401609
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Potential complications following open heart surgery include wound infections of the sternum including dehiscence, abscess formations, and ostemyelitis (infection of the surrounding bone). Patients with concurrent immunosupressive co-morbidities (diabetes, cancer, chronic steroid therapy) are at higher risk for these types of complications. With your husband having abscess formation, bacteremia, and now what sounds like a sternal wound infection, I would have an infectious disease specialist involved who might recommend a long-course of antibiotics. Your previous surgeon should also be involved given there could be potential surgical needs.
367994 tn?1304957193
Q: " what are the options to fix we are on wits end what else can go wrong".

>>>>>It seems the preferred method to close the sternum after open heart surgery is with wire circlage that surgeons my have been trained on and have some resistance to change dispite improvements with rigid fixation with plates.  The records show rigid fixation with a plate that  can mean less discomfort prior to operation, faster return to normal function. and reduced risk life-threatening complications.  There are other mechanical sternum closing devices that are available that you may want to discuss with the surgeon.  

Hope this provides a perspective that may help with the best sternum closing that reduces risk of infection, wires breakng, incomplete healing, etc.

Thank you for the question, and if you have any further questions or comments you are welcome to respond. I wish your husband well going forward.  Take care,

Ken  
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