Heart valve surgery

Heart valve surgery

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Credit: ANTONIA REEVE/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Heart valve surgery. Surgeons carrying out keyhole heart surgery to replace a defective heart valve. They are using special instruments to access the heart through a small hole (lower right) in the patient's chest. Another hole is used to insert a camera to view the area being operated upon. The camera operator is at left, and the view is seen on the display. The rim (red) of the artificial valve is seen with sutures being used to position it. Soft-tissue retractors hold open the main hole in the chest (between two ribs). Keyhole heart surgery is less traumatic than open heart surgery (where the rib cage is opened). Photographed in the UK.

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