In coronary artery bypass surgery, the saphenous vein is usually chosen as the conduit.
Coronary artery bypass surgery is a procedure that involves placing a new blood supply to the heart to bypass vessels that have been severely narrowed from disease. This requires a blood vessel that is free from disease. The conduit chosen is most often a large vessel in the leg called the saphenous vein. This vein is commonly harvested (taken for use in the chest) by an incision from groin to mid or low calf. This incision causes a painful recovery and is often the site of complications from the heart surgery. The saphenous vein is a "redundant" blood vessel. If it is removed, other blood vessels will take over its initial "delivery route."
Last updated: 26-May-04