Endoscopic vessel harvesting
Today, there is a much less invasive option to remove a vessel for a CABG procedure when compare to traditional or bridging harvest. This procedure usually requires only a small incision, about 2cm long. Endoscopic vessel harvesting, or EVH, can be used to remove the saphenous vein from the leg or the radial artery from the forearm.
EVH uses special minimal invasive instruments to view and remove a blood vessel through a small incision. This results in much less trauma to the surrounding tissues of the leg or forearm wich decreases the risk of infection and postoperative pain when compared to the traditional harvest.
Similar to other types of vessel harvesting, EVH carries the risk of infection, thermal injury, hemorrhage, hematoma and laceration. In addition the use of EVH equipment can result in: allergic reaction/hypersensitivity and if gas insufflation is used, carbon dioxide embolism.
Regardless of how the harvest procedure is performed, other blood vessels in the leg or forearm remain in place.
EVH is the standard of care in the United States and is performed in most heart surgery hospitals. It is a good option for many patients. However, since each person is unique, you should discuss your choices with your doctor.
Endoscopic radial artery harvesting (ERAH)
Today, surgeons can choose to remove the radial artery from the patient’s forearm using a minimally invasive technique rather than creating a long incision. Not all patients are suitable to have a radial artey used as graft source. Your doctors will decide which graft is best for you and your condition.