While the results of heart surgery are often positive, there are many risks associated with cardiac procedures. Common complications include bleeding, signs of inflammation such as swelling, fever and infection, and adverse reactions to the medication used by the anesthesiologist to keep patients asleep during the procedure. These are often risks inherent in any surgical procedure, not just heart surgery.
Common Heart Surgery Risks
More specific risks when it comes to cardiac procedures include arrhythmias, which are characterized by irregular heartbeats. Damage sustained to heart tissues, or tissues in the lungs, liver and kidneys is also possible, especially in open-heart surgeries that require large incisions, though minimally invasive laparoscopic surgeries can also lead to tissue damage as well.
Additionally, heart surgery can result in changes in the blood f low to the brain which can increase the risk of stroke, which can either cause short-term damage or permanent injury. Some of the issues a stroke can cause include memory loss, difficulty with fine and major motor control, or the ability to think clearly. Finally, prior tothere is a risk of death with cardiac procedures, though that risk is typically heightened only in individuals who are alreabeforethe heart surgery.