Bypass Surgery

Can chelation therapy be used after bypass surgery?

Yes! Although chelation therapy is best utilized to avoid bypass surgery, many patients who have previously undergone one or more bypass procedures, often with little or no benefit, have subsequently benefited greatly from chelation therapy. Treatment for each patient must be individualized. If all else fails, including chelation therapy, bypass remains available as a last resort.

What about bypass surgery?

Coronary artery bypass surgery, the popularly-prescribed procedure in which blocked portions of major coronary arteries of the heart are bypassed with grafts from a patient’s leg veins, has never been proven by properly controlled studies to offer an advantage over non-surgical treatments, other that relief of pain in a minority of patients who cannot be controlled with medicine. It has even been suggested that the relief of pain following surgery might result from the cutting of nerve fibers which carry pain impulses from the heart and which also stimulate spasm of coronary arteries. It is not possible to perform bypass surgery without interrupting those nerves.

Arteriograms which are done to x-ray the arteries prior to surgery utilize a chemical dye which can cause arterial spasm. It is difficult to determine on the x-rays how much arterial blockage is permanent and how much is reversible spasm.. Indeed, the most recent research suggests that many of the more than 200,000 bypasses performed each year for the relief of pain and other symptoms brought on by clogged or blocked arteries are not necessary.

A good case against rushing into bypass surgery is made by the findings of a ten-year, $24-million study conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) which compared post-operative survival rates of “bypassed” patients with a matched group of equally diseased patients treated non-surgically.

The study uncovered no advantage for the majority of patients who had been operated upon, compared with those receiving non-surgical therapy. It is important to note that the non-surgical therapy reported in that study did not include either chelation therapy or the new calcium blocker drugs, and that only half of the patients received beta blocker drugs. Although studies have been reported to show that patients with left main coronary artery blockage live longer after surgery, the studies were done before calcium blockers and newer beta blockers were available. Those medicines have been scientifically proven to protect against heart attack. Surgery might have come out a clear second best if all presently available non-surgical treatments, including chelation, had been compared to bypass.

Having surgery didn’t improve the chances of most patients to live longer, live healthier, live better, or enjoy life more , when the results were statistically analyzed. The incidence of heart attacks (myocardial infarction) and both employment and recreational status were the same when comparing a large group of patients treated surgically with those treated non-surgically, even without using chelation therapy for the non-surgical treatment group.

Most importantly, cardiovascular surgery does nothing to arrest or reverse the underlying disease, which exists in varying degrees throughout the body. It is at best a piecemeal “cure” for a system-wide problem. Bypassing a restricted portion of the body’s blood vessels can have little lasting benefit when the same degenerating condition which caused the most extreme blockage at one or two sites must of necessity be taking place everywhere, throughout the circulatory network

One thing the general public is not fully aware of is that many people who have one bypass operation later need a second bypass. Sometimes the blood vessels that weren’t bypassed become clogged and also need bypassing; sometimes the transplanted vessels used in the first graft become filled with new plaque; sometimes the transplants malfunction or turn out to be too small for the job. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that by ten years after surgery, grafted vessels had closed in 40 percent of patients, and in the remaining 60 percent, half developed further coronary narrowing. Once you’ve had a bypass, your chances of needing another go up about five percent a year. After five years, some specialists estimate, your chances of needing a second operation could be as high as 30 to 40 percent. And some patients go on to even a third operation or more. And approximately 2 to 3 out of every 100 patients undergoing bypass surgery die as a result of the procedure-even more if they are severely ill at the time of surgery. A much larger percentage suffer serious complications, even after they survive the surgery.

Chelation patients are frequently able to return to work and to resume their sports and other activities, without the need to undergo surgery. If they stay on a proper diet, exercise regularly, continue to take the prescribed program of nutritional supplements, and receive periodic maintenance chelation treatments (monthly, more or less, depending on the severity of the underlying medical diagnosis) they can usually go many years without suffering further heart attacks, strokes, senility or gangrenous extremities.

If you have been told, like most people eager for additional information about chelation therapy, that you have advanced arterial disease, you may have been advised to have vascular surgery. If so, it is essential for you to understand the nature of your disease and all possible treatment choices, before you can make an intelligent decision concerning the various options. Even if chelation therapy and other non-surgical therapies should fail, bypass still remains a choice.