Coronary bypass chest scar

Coronary bypass chest scar

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Credit: DR P. MARAZZI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Coronary bypass scar. Scar on the chest of a 69- year-old man one week after he underwent a coronary artery bypass graft. A section of healthy vein was removed from the man's arm and used to bypass a narrowed section of the coronary artery in his heart. The scar seen here results from the opening of the chest cavity during the procedure. Narrowing of the coronary artery is often caused by the build-up of fatty atheroma plaques on the artery walls. It restricts the blood supply to the heart muscle, which can lead to angina pectoris (chest pain) or a myocardial infarction (heart attack). Bypassing the diseased artery restores normal blood flow to the muscle.

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