NAT 190613 The patient Mr John Davies with Dr Arun Goyal-1560431932081
The patient Mr John Davies with Dr Arun Goyal. Image Credit: Supplied

Ras Al Khaimah: Doctors in Ras Al Khaimah were able to save a British expat from an imminent heart attack after performing beating heart bypass surgery.

John Davies, 49, went to RAK Hospital for a routine check-up after complaining of discomfort in his chest and was found to have four blocked arteries. “We took the patient’s symptoms and complaints seriously and tested him on cardiac injury markers used in the diagnosis and risk stratification of patients with chest pain and suspected acute coronary syndrome,” said Dr Arun Goyal.

“This was all the more important since he has a very strong family history of ischemic heart disease and thromboembolic episodes. We tested the patient’s blood for Troponin, a protein found in cardiac and skeletal muscle, which releases into the blood in case of heart damage, and found the results to be positive. So we did his coronary angiogram, which found multiple blockages in his arteries.”

Doctors opted for beating heart bypass surgery because it reduces recovery time, requires less blood transfusion and has fewer side effects. Cognitive brain functions are also maintained.

“This surgery is also called ‘Off Pump Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery’ and simply put, we do this procedure while the heart is still beating and the lungs are performing, as opposed to the surgery when the heart is stopped. We use a tissue stabilisation system to immobilise the area of the heart where we’re working. In all, Davies’ bypass surgery took four hours in which we put four grafts in his arteries,” added Dr Goyal.

The patient was discharged a week after surgery and is now leading a normal life, albeit on medication to reduce hypertension, maintain cholesterol and to thin his blood.

Because of this case, doctors are now warning everyone over the age of 35 to get regular heart health check ups.