Certain drugs, especially
anticoagulants like warfarin (such as Coumadin), are usually stopped before
CABG surgery because they prevent the blood from clotting. If your blood is too
thin, you will be at a greater risk for internal bleeding, which is a serious
complication of CABG surgery. If you have another condition that makes your
blood more likely to clot, you may be given a different medication than the one
you usually take.
You may be asked to arrive for your surgery the
night before so that doctors can monitor you. Most other medications that you
normally take in the mornings should be continued up to the day of your
surgery, especially if you are taking them for other medical conditions. Check
with your surgeon about all medications and supplements you are currently
On the day of your CABG operation, you should have only a
sip of water with any medication so that you keep your stomach empty.
If you have diabetes, your
doctors may need to adjust your medications to prepare for your CABG surgery.
Since CABG surgery requires you to stop eating several hours before your
procedure, your blood glucose level may drop so low that your regular
medications (which lower your glucose level) may not be necessary. Talk to your
doctors about the type and severity of your diabetes, as well as which
medications you are taking.
- Arrange for transportation the day of your
surgery, for someone to help you at home during your first week out of the
hospital, and for someone to help with chores and errands for 1 to 2 months
after your surgery. You may be too physically tired and sore after your surgery
to do many things for yourself.
- Prepay any bills that will be due
soon after your surgery. You will probably want to concentrate on recovering,
not on everyday affairs.
- Arrange your personal matters, including a
will, living will, and nursing preferences. Rarely, serious complications of
CABG surgery (including death) can happen. Therefore, you should plan for this
possibility and make sure that you have made your end-of-life wishes
should discuss complications of CABG surgery a few weeks beforehand with both
your surgeon and your family. In particular, you may wish to clarify your
desires about matters such as life support (such as a breathing tube or
medications to keep you alive) and resuscitation measures (such as chest
compressions and electric shock) in case of an emergency.
addition, you may want to consider becoming an organ and tissue donor. If you
are an organ and tissue donor, your liver, lungs, kidneys, and other organs can
be donated to another person who needs them in case you die during your
surgery. Although only a very small percentage of all CABG surgeries performed
result in death, it is important to prepare in case this happens.