Why it's done

Many types of heart procedures may be conducted with minimally invasive heart surgery. Minimally invasive heart procedures may include:

  • Mitral valve repair and replacement
  • Tricuspid valve repair and replacement
  • Aortic valve replacement
  • Atrial septal defect and patent foramen ovale closure
  • Atrioventricular septal defect surgery
  • Maze procedure for atrial fibrillation
  • Coronary artery bypass surgery
  • Saphenous vein harvest for coronary artery bypass surgery

Potential benefits

Minimally invasive heart surgery isn't an option for everyone, but it can offer potential benefits in those for whom it's appropriate. Potential benefits of minimally invasive heart surgery compared with open-heart surgery may include:

  • Less blood loss
  • Lower risk of infection
  • Reduced trauma and pain
  • Shorter time in the hospital, faster recovery and quicker return to normal activities
  • Smaller, less noticeable scars

Who benefits from minimally invasive heart surgery

Not everyone is a candidate for minimally invasive heart surgery. Your doctor and treatment team will work with you to determine whether minimally invasive heart surgery is an option to treat your condition.

Your doctor and treatment team may evaluate you to determine whether you're a candidate for minimally invasive heart surgery. In an evaluation, your doctor may conduct a physical examination, review your medical history and perform tests.

Minimally invasive heart surgery can be a complex surgical procedure. Doctors may recommend you have the surgery at a medical center with surgeons and a surgical team experienced and trained in conducting minimally invasive procedures.