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Multiple Bypass Surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital Uses Robot and Allows Most Patients to be Discharged within 24-36 Hours

March 10, 2004

Lenox Hill Hospital has pioneered a new minimally invasive multiple-heart-bypass procedure using a robot that allows most patients to be discharged from the hospital within 24-36 hours. The ''painless bypass'' procedure typically allows patients to get back to their normal routines within 4-5 days.

The advanced procedure uses a robot to make a two-and-a-half-inch incision in the front of the chest, instead of the usual large incision which requires splitting the breastbone. Then, rather than having the surgeon cut through bone or rib to reach the heart, the heart is rotated to the incision.

Cardiac Surgeon Nilesh Patel and Valavanur Subramanian, MD, Chairman, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at The Lenox Hill Heart and Vascular Institute of New York were the first surgeons in the world to perform multiple bypass surgery using this minimally invasive procedure. Lenox Hill is the only hospital in the New York tri-state area currently performing this unique multiple vessel minimally invasive procedure.

With the first 45 patients who underwent the procedure at Lenox Hill Hospital, about 40 per cent were discharged within 14 hours of surgery, and another 10 per cent within 24 hours.

"The experience for patients is quite dramatic," explains Dr. Patel who has grafted up to four coronary arteries using this robotic approach. "One patient simply could not believe that he had undergone triple bypass surgery because he was moving around so normally the day after the operation."

Until now, minimally invasive direct coronary artery bypass (MIDCAB) surgery, which was pioneered nearly a decade ago by Dr. Subramanian, was only used with patients with single-vessel coronary artery disease. That meant that any those patients requiring a triple or quadruple coronary bypass had to have conventional bypass surgery and remain in the hospital for longer period of time.

Lenox Hill Hospital, a 652-bed, acute-care hospital located on Manhattan's Upper East Side, has earned a national reputation for outstanding patient care and innovative medical and surgical treatments. The Hospital is particularly well known for excellence in the treatment of cardiovascular disease.

For more information, you can visit the cardiac surgical website www.lenoxhillheartvascular.com or call the Lenox Hill Hospital Cardiac Surgery Department at (212) 434-3000. You can also e-mail us at vsubramanian@lenoxhill.net.

Members of the press seeking information about Lenox Hill Hospital should call the Public Relations Department at (212) 434-2400.