Coronary bypass rates drop

Fewer people have undergone heart surgery since 2001

By Nathan Seppa, 15:23 PM May 3, 2011

Think of it as bypassing the bypass. U.S. heart patients have been less likely in the past decade to undergo surgery to install a substitute vessel around a clogged coronary artery, with many patients getting a less invasive alternative procedure.

Coronary bypass operations decreased by 38 percent per capita in U.S. adults between 2001 and 2008, researchers report in the May 4 Journal of the American Medical Association. Meanwhile, angioplasty procedures — in which a doctor threads a cathe...

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