Because coronary bypass surgery is an open-heart surgery, you may have complications during or following your procedure. Possible complications of coronary bypass surgery include:

  • Bleeding
  • Heart rhythm irregularities (arrhythmias)
  • Infections of the chest wound
  • Memory loss or troubles with thinking clearly, which often improve within six to 12 months
  • Kidney problems
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack, if a blood clot breaks loose soon after surgery

Your risk of developing complications is generally low, but depends on your health before surgery. Your doctor can give you a better idea of the likelihood of experiencing these risks.

Your risk of complications is higher if the operation is done as an emergency or if you have other medical conditions, such as emphysema, kidney disease, diabetes or blocked arteries in your legs (peripheral artery disease, or PAD).