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Cardiothoracic surgery 

Cardiothoracic surgery
Chapter:
Cardiothoracic surgery
DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199681907.003.0033
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date: 18 August 2019

Chapter 33 provides an overview of the principles and practice of cardiothoracic surgery. Useful advice on how to gain exposure to this surgical specialty and suggestions on relevant investigations and diagnostic procedures to see are provided. An approach to the clinical assessment of patients in cardiothoracic outpatients is outlined, including focused history taking and clinical examination for both cardiac and thoracic surgical patients—a rich environment for eliciting clinical signs. Acute cardiothoracic presentations are covered with particular emphasis on acute aortic dissection (including classification) and chest trauma (including life-threatening traumatic chest injuries). Cardiothoracic surgery is an exciting environment for medical students interested in surgery. This chapter describes the principles of the most common operations: coronary artery bypass grafting, aortic valve replacement, mitral valve repair, lobectomy, video-assisted thoracic surgery, bronchoscopy, mediastinoscopy, and intercostal chest drain insertion. An exam-focused section covers the key skills in history taking, clinical examination, and likely OSCE stations. Seminal research trials relevant to cardiothoracic surgery are summarized.

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