Coronary Artery Bypass Graft
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (Discharge Care) Care Guide
- Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Aftercare Instructions
- Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Discharge Care
- Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Inpatient Care
- Coronary Artery Bypass Graft Precare
- En Espanol
A coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) is open heart surgery to open blocked arteries in your heart. An artery is a blood vessel that carries oxygen to your body. Parts of your heart may not get enough blood if an artery is blocked. You may have a heart attack if one or more of these arteries is blocked. CABG surgery can improve blood flow to your heart by bypassing (sending blood around) the blocked part of an artery. This restores blood flow to your heart and the rest of your body.
AFTER YOU LEAVE:
- Aspirin: This helps prevent blood clots and problems with blood flow in your heart. If you are told to take aspirin, do not take acetaminophen or ibuprofen instead. Do not take more or less aspirin than directed. This medicine makes it more likely for you to bleed or bruise.
- Cholesterol medicine: This helps lower the amount of cholesterol in your blood.
- Heart medicine: This medicine is given to strengthen or regulate your heartbeat. It also may help your heart in other ways. Talk with your caregiver to find out what your heart medicine is and why you are taking it.
- Pain medicine: You may be given medicine to take away or decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine.
- Take your medicine as directed. Call your primary healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Follow up with your primary healthcare provider or cardiologist as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
Your primary healthcare provider or cardiologist may recommend that you attend cardiac rehabilitation (rehab). This is a program run by specialists who will help you safely strengthen your heart and prevent more heart disease. The plan includes exercise, relaxation, stress management, and heart-healthy nutrition. Caregivers will also check to make sure any medicines you are taking are working. The plan may also include instructions for when you can drive, return to work, and do other normal daily activities.
Cover your bandages with plastic wrap or a plastic bag when you bathe. Change your bandages when they get wet or dirty. Care for your wound as directed.
- Eat a variety of healthy foods: Healthy foods include fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meats, and fish. Ask if you need to be on a special diet. You may need to eat foods that are low in salt, fat, or cholesterol.
- Drink liquids as directed: Ask your primary healthcare provider how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you.
- Do not smoke: If you smoke, it is never too late to quit. Ask for information about how to stop smoking if you need help.
- Maintain a healthy weight: Ask your primary healthcare provider how much you should weigh. Ask him to help you create a weight loss plan if you are overweight. Extra weight can increase the stress on your heart. Weigh yourself daily before breakfast and keep a log.
For support and more information:
- American Heart Association
7272 Greenville Avenue
Dallas , TX 75231-4596
Phone: 1- 800 - 242-8721
Web Address: http://www.heart.org
Contact your primary healthcare provider or cardiologist if:
- You have a fever higher than 101°F (38.4°C).
- Your symptoms return.
- You have gained 2 pounds in a day.
- Your surgery area is red, warm, swollen, or has pus coming from it.
- You are depressed.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
Seek care immediately or call 911 if:
- You have a severe headache.
- You have a fast heartbeat that flutters.
- You have numbness or tingling in your arms or legs.
- You feel like you are going to faint.
- Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
- You suddenly feel lightheaded and short of breath.
- You have chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough. You may cough up blood.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.