Department of Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery, Cardiac Surgery

The Department of Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery at the Clinical Center of the University of Debrecen Teaching Hospital is responsible for the care of 2.5 million people living in Hajdú-Bihar, Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg, Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén, and Heves counties, as well as the eastern part of Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok County. This is more than one fifth of the Hungarian population and it is responsible for the largest region among cardiac surgery centers. The preoperative check-up of patients is done at the invasive cardiology centers of the above-mentioned counties. The activities of our institute cover the entire range of adult cardiac surgery with the exception of heart transplantation and artificial heart implants. Every year 950-1,000 open heart surgeries and 400-450 other procedures are carried out at the department. The number of open heart surgeries was the highest last year among Hungarian cardiac surgery centers. Patients also arrive from other counties outside the area of responsibility and even from outside the country in order to have heart surgery here.

Besides inpatient services, cardiac surgery and physiotherapy specialist consultations are also available at the department.

  • No. of beds in cardiac surgery: 62
  • No. of beds in intensive care: 11
  • No. of operating theaters: 3

In recent years the activities of cardiac surgery in Debrecen have been extended with numerous new procedures. One of the most significant of these is that we introduced myocardial bridging with internal mammary artery. In the case of young patients we strive for total arterial revascularization using IMA on both sides and other arterial grafts.

Several new surgical techniques have been introduced at the institute. Surgical procedures on the aortic and mitral valves enabling the retention of the abnormal heart valve, the replacement of the aortic root with vascular grafts with the re-implantation of the patient’s own aortic valve into it. We were the first in Hungary to use several new cannulation methods in the treatment of aortic dissection. In 2012 the first aortic prosthetic valves fixed without suture (Sorin Perceval-S) were implanted in Debrecen, while in 2013, in close cooperation with cardiologists, the first successful aortic valve replacements with catheterization were completed.

The age of patients getting heart surgery increases year by and the severe comorbidities are becoming more frequent. Mortality, however, practically remained on the same level, moreover, it slightly decreased in the previous year due to the fact that during operation we pay special attention to the protection of the heart muscle and the monitoring of brain functions. For this purpose we have introduced new procedures like blood cardioplegia, the flooding of the surgical area with carbon dioxide when opening the heart chambers to avoid air embolism, and the continuous monitoring of the oxygen supply to the brain tisse using infrared radiation.

Our department is dedicated to providing the most advanced services to our patients.  Thus we have established good relationships with several cardiac surgery institutes both in Hungary and abroad, including several working groups of departments within the university, the Institute of Pathophysiology at the Medical University of Vienna, the Christian Doppler Research Institute, the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the same university, and the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Experimental Cardiac Surgery at the Medical University of Vienna.

Updated: 2017.09.03.

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