Lower Mini-Sternotomy for Direct Coronary Artery Bypass on the Beating Heart

(Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Juntendo University, Tokyo, Japan)

Taira Yamamoto Yasuyuki Hosoda Shiro Sasaguri
Kenji Takazawa Masahiro Goto Shiori Kawasaki
Motoshige Yamasaki Hiroshi Sato Tomonobu Fukuda
Although left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) grafting with a left internal thoracic artery (ITA) on a beating heart via a small left anterior thoracotomy (LAST) has become widely accepted, significant limitations exist due to the limited surgeon experience, smallness of exposure, thus making harvesting of the ITA, visualization of the surgical field and anastomosis quite difficult. Patients often have significant pain and wound complications postoperatively. A lower mini-sternotomy approach in 4 patients was performed from December 1998 through January 1999. Results: The length of mini-sternotomy incision is 7 to 14cm. These operations were accomplished without morbidity or mortality. No patients required intraoperative conversion to conventional bypass. Postoperative angiography showed patency of graft without stenosis of the anastomosis in all 4 patients. The patients did not complain of significant pain and their postoperative hospital stay was 5 to 11 days. The lower mini-sternotomy approach or gxyphoidh approach proposed by Benetti seems to be an excellent novel approach giving the freedom of extension of the incision if needed with satisfactory exposure for left ITA harvest and access to LAD as well as the distal RCA, and causes less postoperative incisional pain.
@Jpn. J. Cardiovasc. Surg. 29: 21-24 (2000)