Important information for open heart surgery patients
This issue only applies to patients who have had open heart surgery at this hospital in the last few years.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are investigating reports that certain devices used to heat and cool blood during open heart surgeries have been linked to a rare bacterial infection. These devices are commonly used during open heart surgeries in hospitals across the country. The chances of getting this infection from the surgery is less than one percent. However, the CDC and the FDA have recommended that we notify patients who had surgery with one of these devices.
- If you had surgery where this device was used in the specified timeframe, you will receive a letter from the hospital with more information.
- According to the CDC, if your surgery was more than two years ago and you are not having any symptoms, you do not need to worry about this issue.
What’s my Risk?
The CDC estimates the risk to be less than one percent. Of the thousands of patients at our hospital who have had open heart surgery, there have been no reports of patients who have developed this infection to date. Also, the CDC notes that if your surgery was more than two years ago and you are not having any symptoms, you do not need to worry about this issue.
Symptoms of Infection
Symptoms of this infection to watch for may include: unexplained fever, night sweats, muscle aches, weight loss, fatigue, or drainage from your incision. This infection is very slow growing, may be difficult to diagnose and may take months to develop symptoms. That’s why it’s important to talk to your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms after open heart surgery. The infection is not contagious and cannot be spread person-to-person.
For More Information
Your health and wellbeing is always our foremost concern; therefore, we wanted you to have this information. For additional information, please watch this video message from Michael Bell, MD, CDC’s Deputy Director of the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion.