Heart surgery. View of a surgical team conducting open heart surgery in an operating theatre. They are wearing surgical caps, gowns and face masks to maintain a sterile environment. During open heart surgery the heart is stopped, so a heart-lung machine (lower left) is needed to oxygenate the blood. Tubes carry deoxygenated blood from the patient's main veins into the heart-lung machine. In the machine, the blood is oxygenated, warmed, and pumped back into the patient's aortic artery. Heart surgery is performed to treat defective heart valves, repair congenital defects and, most commonly, to carry out coronary bypasses.
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