Heart Surgery & Procedures

Depending on the type of heart disease you have, surgery may be your best treatment option. It can be distressing to find out that you need heart surgery, but you are in skilled hands at MUSC Health’s Heart & Vascular Center.

Our specialized cardiac surgery team is the most experienced in the state. U.S. News & World Report has designated MUSC Health as a high-performing hospital in heart bypass surgery. Our team delivers every available heart surgery, with excellent outcomes.

Why Choose MUSC Health for Heart Surgery?

As South Carolina’s only academic medical center, MUSC Health brings together the most advanced procedures available from the state’s most experienced heart surgeons. You will find:

  • Newest treatment options: In two state-of-the-art hybrid operating rooms, our doctors collaborate to perform surgical and catheter-based (using small tubes inserted through veins) procedures. Our surgical suite offers the very latest technologies available, which is why doctors come from around the world to observe our work.
  • Recognized expertise: MUSC Health offers the only heart transplant program in South Carolina. Skilled surgeons deliver these delicate procedures with excellent success. Our Congenital Heart Program is one of 12 in the U.S. rated by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons.
  • Personalized treatment: Our growing heart surgery team includes skillful surgeons who teach tomorrow’s cardiac surgeons the most advanced techniques. Our caring nurses, cardiologists and cardiac anesthesiologists deliver individualized care from your diagnosis to the day you go home. Meet our team.
  • Convenient follow-up: We work with your referring cardiologist to keep your post-treatment recovery on track. For added convenience, you can receive follow-up care at one of our regional clinic locations or through the MUSC Health Center for Telehealth.
  • At-home monitoring: After you return home, we can monitor you remotely with the implanted CardioMEMS HF System. We’re the only hospital in South Carolina to offer this system, which signals your doctor if you have any signs of heart failure. Your doctor can adjust your treatment as needed. Learn more about advanced heart failure care.
  • Supervised rehabilitation: After your surgery, we help you recover in a safe, monitored environment. You can gradually rebuild with gentle exercise through our cardiac rehab program.

Heart Surgery and Procedures

Our heart surgeons provide every type of cardiac surgery, including:

  • Coronary artery bypass graft (CABG)
  • Heart valve surgery
  • Congenital heart condition surgery

Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG)

If you have coronary artery disease, plaque (fatty buildup) may block your coronary arteries, the blood vessels that nourish the heart itself. The plaque can limit how much oxygenated blood reaches your heart or cause a blood clot to form. It may cut off all blood flow to your heart, causing a heart attack.

CABG diverts blood around clogged blood vessels. It can help your heart stay strong and reduce the risk of a heart attack.

About CABG:

  • The surgeon takes sections of an artery from your chest or arm, or vein from your leg.
  • The doctor reattaches these blood vessels to your heart. The new structure reroutes blood flow around the blocked vessels.

Sometimes, doctors can perform CABG without stopping your heart. This variation is called off-pump coronary bypass.

Congenital Heart Condition Surgery

Our team delivers a complete array of procedures to treat congenital heart conditions (conditions you are born with). MUSC Health is the only South Carolina medical center to have the Adult Congenital Heart Association’s seal of approval as an ACHD Accredited Comprehensive Care Center. The recognition acknowledges our expertise and comprehensive care for people with ACHD. Read more about our Congenital Heart Program.

Pediatric and adult cardiac surgeons work closely together to treat patients of all ages for any congenital heart defect, including:

  • Ventricular septal defect (VSD): Surgeons repair holes in the ventricle (lower chamber) of the heart.
  • Atrial septal defect (ASDs): An atrial septal defect is a hole in the wall connecting the heart’s upper chambers. Our teams address most ASDs with a minimally invasive repair. We offer surgery for all types of ASD.
  • Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF): We diagnose and monitor TOF to find the best timing to repair the ventricular septum (division between the lower chambers of the heart). Our congenital heart specialists can follow you throughout your life so you get seamless treatment for TOF.
  • Single-ventricle defects: Some children are born with one lower heart chamber that is smaller, not fully developed, or missing a valve. Our doctors are experts in treating these conditions with surgery and mechanical circulatory support.
  • Pulmonary valve stenosis and aortic valve stenosis: Sometimes a heart valve is too stiff to move as it should, or some people are born with valves that are fused shut. These instances, known as valve stenosis, can damage your heart. Our heart surgeons offer a wide range of valve surgeries to help your heart work better. Find out more about heart valve surgery.

Other Heart Surgery and Procedures at MUSC Health

Our cardiologists and heart surgeons perform many other heart valve and aorta surgery procedures. Our work also includes cardiac catheterization-based interventional procedures and electrophysiology solutions (correcting the heart’s rhythm). We offer: