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Cardiac surgery take-away kit
  1. Ian Ramnarine1,2,
  2. Maninder Kalkat1,
  3. John A C Chalmers2,
  4. Stephen Rooney1,
  5. Timothy Graham1
  1. 1Department of Cardiac Surgery, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK
  2. 2Department of Cardiac Surgery, Cardiothoracic Centre, Liverpool, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 MrTimothy Graham
 Consultant Cardiac Surgeon, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TH, UK; Tim.Graham{at}


Background: Trauma to the heart is usually rapidly fatal, but survival can be improved with timely and appropriate surgical management. However, certain injuries require specialist cardiothoracic surgical intervention.

Methods: Three patients with coronary artery lacerations treated by cardiac surgeons at remote hospitals are presented. The recent literature, the current treatment options available and suggestions on techniques to improve survival are reviewed.

Conclusions: Laceration of the coronary arteries is difficult to manage, especially in the absence of specialty equipment. Appropriate protocols should be established to provide this service in order to optimise the management of patients with complicated trauma. A cardiac surgical take-away kit could facilitate the management of these difficult patients in a setting remote from the cardiac operating room.

  • CABG, coronary artery bypass grafting
  • CPB, cardiopulmonary bypass
  • CTS, cardiothoracic surgeon
  • ERT, emergency room thoracotomy
  • IABP, intra-aortic balloon pump
  • LAD, left anterior descending coronary artery
  • OPCAB, off-pump coronary artery bypass grafting
  • cardiac trauma
  • coronary artery laceration

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  • Competing interests: None declared.

  • Informed consent was obtained for publication of peoples’ details in this report.