The Mini-Maze procedure is a surgical procedure of the heart. A pattern of scars are made in the upper chambers of the heart which may look like a maze. The chambers are called the atria.
A traditional maze surgery requires the chest to be opened and the heart to be stopped. A mini-maze is done with small incisions and special surgical tools. This often leads to shorter recovery time and lower risk of infection.
The Maze procedure is done to cure
atrial fibrillation. Fibrillation is abnormal beating of heart muscle. It is caused by erratic electrical impulses that travel through the heart muscle. These impulses can cause the chambers to beat too fast. This can decrease blood flow through the heart. Atrial fibrillation can also cause blood clots to form in the heart that can travel to the brain and cause a stroke.
The Maze procedure is used to treat severe cases that did not respond to medication or other procedures. Electrical impulses cannot flow through scar tissue. By creating specific patterns of scar tissue, maze surgery creates a pathway for healthy impulses and blocks erratic impulses.
Minimally invasive procedure only requires small cuts to be made in the chest wall. Two small incisions will be made along your side. A small camera will be inserted through one of the incisions. The doctor will be able to look at the heart with this camera. A second tool will be used to create small areas of scar tissue. The tip of the tool uses extreme cold or radiowaves to destroy small areas of tissue. This process is called ablation.
Once the chosen areas have been treated, the instruments will be removed. The skin will be closed with stitches or staples.
Cardiac rhythm disturbances. Society of Thoracic Surgeons website. Available at:
https://ctsurgerypatients.org/adult-heart-disease/cardiac-rhythm-disturbances. Updated July 2016. Accessed November 28, 2017.
Maze procedure for treatment of atrial fibrillation. University of Southern California Cardiothoracic Surgery website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Accessed November 28, 2017.
Maze surgery. Texas Heart institute website. Available at: ...(Click grey area to select URL) Updated August 2016. Accessed November 28, 2017.