Minimally invasive heart bypass surgery is done without stopping the heart and putting the patient on a heart-lung machine. A 3 to 5 inch (8 to 13 cm) incision is made in the left part of the chest between the ribs. This incision is much less traumatic than the traditional heart bypass surgery incision which separates the breast bone. Minimally invasive heart bypass surgery allows the patient less pain and a faster recovery.
Review Date 8/12/2014
Updated by: Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.