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The UofL Health - Rudd Heart and Lung Center is one of the leading centers in the U.S. for comprehensive cardiovascular care. Our surgeons and professional staff have been working as a team for more than 25 years.
UofL Health - Jewish Hospital was the site of the world's first and second AbioCor® Implantable Replacement Heart, as well as the world's first successful heart transplant following the use of a Thoratec ventricular assist device. In Kentucky alone, Jewish was the first to perform an open heart surgery, heart transplant, first implantation of the HeartMate II ventricular assist device and much more.
For patients with end-stage heart failure, Jewish Heart Care offers many alternatives to heart transplantation, including the use of Ventricular Assist Devices, so if the heart can recover on its own, it can heal without the need of a transplant. Heart surgery remains an effective treatment for many conditions of the heart that cannot be corrected by medication or lifestyle changes to manage heart attack risks.
Open heart surgery is any surgery where the chest is opened and surgery is performed on the heart muscle, valves, arteries, or other heart structures. The term "open" refers to the chest, not the heart itself. The heart may or may not be opened, depending on the type of surgery.
Because the heart is constantly beating, heart surgery has challenges that no other type of surgery has. Not only does it move, it cannot be stopped for more than a few minutes without causing brain damage.
A heart-lung machine, or a cardiopulmonary bypass machine, is usually used during conventional open heart surgery to help provide oxygen-rich blood to the brain and other vital organs while the heart is stopped.
Body cooling techniques are also used to slow the need for oxygen to the heart and allow more time for surgery without causing brain damage. This in turn enables surgeons to work on the heart for two to four hours without damaging the heart tissue.
In the instance where a heart cannot continue beating without assistance, ventricular assist devices are used as bridges to heart transplants, myocardial recovery, rescue surgeries and destination therapy, or permanent use of the device for patients that aren’t transplant eligible. For more information about ventricular assist devices, click here.
Averaging more than 1,500 open heart surgeries annually, which fully exceeds the number the American College of Cardiology requires, Jewish Heart Care offers the most technologically advanced, complete open heart surgery care in the region. Why would you choose anywhere else?