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Joseph F. Sabik III, MD

Joseph F. Sabik III, MD, is Chairman of the Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery at Cleveland Clinic and directs the Clinic’s Cardiothoracic Training Program.

What You Need to Know About Repaired, Replaced Heart Valves

Have you had a heart valve repaired or replaced? Even if it’s functioning well, it’s important to make sure you work with your doctor to have it evaluated over time. A repaired or replacement valve may imitate a healthy, surgically untouched valve. However, it simply is not the same.

Do You Need a Heart-Lung Machine for Your Heart Surgery?

Are you scheduled for heart surgery? There has been a lot of talk about whether it is better to be on or off a heart-lung machine during heart procedures. However, I would argue that this kind of binary thinking — on-pump versus off-pump — is misguided. Let’s take new look at the pump – the … Read More

Having Heart Surgery? Understand These 2 Techniques to Open Arterial Blockages

When people have a blockage in their arteries, they tend to favor the idea of a surgeons performing Percutaneous Coronary Intervention (PCI) over a full-blown surgery – or Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG). Percutaneous means that surgeons are going through the skin, typically with a tube from the groin area. Surgeons guide that instrument up … Read More

Hybrid Bypass Could One Day Replace Your Open Chest Surgery

The goal of bypass surgery is to open arteries and ensure good blood flow. Surgeons have been exploring alternative methods to perform this surgery safely with the best outcomes.  The answer may be a hybrid procedure – one which blends grafting with stenting. In the right patients, it can one day offer the best aspects … Read More

4 Best Ways to Avoid Blood Transfusions During Your Heart Surgery

Before heart surgery, you and your family may have questions about the use of blood transfusions. In certain circumstances, getting a blood transfusion can be lifesaving. However, it is not without risks. Research shows that patients who require blood transfusions don’t do as well as those who don’t receive a transfusion. In fact, transfusions are associated … Read More

The Best Bypass Surgery Option for Diabetic Patients

Sometimes, two arteries are better than one. For diabetics who have multivessel or extensive coronary artery disease, we have learned that bypass surgery to give blood a new pathway to the heart is better than angioplasty, which involves using a tiny device to open up narrowed blood vessels. The use of bypass surgery is supported by … Read More

How Modern Imaging Technology Enhances Your Heart Surgery

Today, advances in digital imaging enhance the surgeon’s vision, allowing us to see the heart better than ever before. This new “set of eyes” empowers us to decide on the best treatment plan. We can now successfully perform very complicated procedures that were not possible before. Developing tools of the trade  Centuries ago, scientists could … Read More

Data Analysis Helps Tailor Your Heart Disease Treatment

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a complex disease with many possible treatment options. Because of this complexity, we increasingly find risk modeling useful in tailoring treatment plans for each patient. In risk modeling, we collect a large pool of data from different types of completed procedures. Then we analyze the success of each. After that, … Read More

Surgery Scheduled? How to Make the Most of Your Preadmission Appointment

When I was still in medical school and they talked about meeting with patients before surgery, “informed consent” meant that you simply explained to your patient what a reasonable person would want to know about a procedure. The physician or sometimes a nurse would tell a patient what the surgery was and then hand him or … Read More