WHY SAY NO TO BYPASS SURGERY?

Heart disease or Scientifically Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) is the cause of maximum deaths in India – about 30% of deaths on a daily basis are due to CHD. It is estimated that about 9000 people die every day which is equivalent to one in every 10 seconds due to this disease. Not only in this country but also this disease is the highest killer all across the world. In the USA, the most advanced country in the world one person dies every 40 seconds because of cardiovascular disease.

This disease, being so important and fatal, received so much attention that in the past 7 decades that thousands of research studies have been conducted to understand the reasons for the disease and on how to solve this fatal disease. These studies (a list of important studies are listed in Table 1.) have successfully pointed out that particular fatty foods – especially Cholesterol and Triglycerides, smoking (tobacco), high BP, Diabetes, overweight and psychological stress are the leading cause of this disease while exercising/Physical activity and regular intake of fruits and vegetables can help in solving this disease.

During these last 5 decades, two more types of treatments became gradually available – the medical drugs and surgeries like Bypass Surgery/Angioplasty. The medicines could reduce the blood level of fats, control Blood Pressure and blood sugar, reduce the symptoms of angina (the main symptom of heart disease) and thin the blood. These were able to somehow control some of the Risk factors and protect the heart after the heart disease had developed.

But the second method of treatment, namely the Bypass Surgery and Angioplasties, which were developed during these decades, were found to lack reasoning, proved to be failing and counterproductive. The main reasons for this failure were that they did not solve the reasons for the disease and more importantly they disturbed  Nature. The human body is the greatest and finest machine in the world and these operative procedures tried to disturb this machine internally. Moreover, as they did not solve the reasons for the blockages (the Risk factors) not only the complications came in plenty but also the temporary solutions failed with repeated blockages.

Though these operative procedures were not so effective, failing and full of complications – in the last few decades a huge number of cardiologists (called the Interventional Cardiologists), Heart surgeons and   a big number of heart hospitals joined together to provide these treatments. As they had already declared Bypass surgery and Angioplasties as “Gold standard” of heart treatments; as they had a huge stake in these hospital economics – they kept on promoting these treatments despite knowing that they were very expensive and not as effective as they declared them to be. Though they understood that optimum drug treatment with good preventive methods was equally good if not better and cheaper for the heart patients – they kept on promoting and popularizing Bypass surgery and Angioplasty. They had in themselves fear of losing importance and rendering their expertise useless.  They gave the impression to people that lifestyle changes are not practical and effective. They also artificially created a fear psychosis of heart attack to push the heart patients to surgery and Angioplasty.  

 On the other hand, the experts in preventive cardiologists and epidemiologists kept on working on the reasons of the blockages and heart disease and tried other non-invasive ways to solve the problems by conducting thousands of research studies. They not only realized that not only the heart problems are preventive from further worsening but they can be reversed. Changes in lifestyle, diet, exercise, stress management methods were supplemented with the use of medicines wherever required. The results were amazing. Their results showed that lifestyle changes and medicine combination is much better and cheaper than doing Bypass surgery or Angioplasty.